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Old 04-08-2013, 11:52 AM   #16
WildmanSam
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i witnessed an event nearly identical to yours except i was not on my motorcycle, nor did i know the rider who died.

i was following behind the rider when a truck, stopped, making a left turn got rear ended and pushed into our lane. the biker had zero time to react and collided with the front pillar. his rate of speed was much higher than yours and he somersaulted multiple times before landing in the drainage ditch. i was the first one to call 911 and make contact with him, raising his visor and doing my best to console his last few minutes of gasping for air while choking on blood.


that was the car that rear ended the truck.


this is the truck he hit at 55mph and his jacket which was cut off my paramedics.


his bike. and directly behind it my truck.

it was another almost blameless situation; the driver of the car was a teenage boy who had just got his license. a lawsuit would do little to console the family that lost their father.

i understand the feeling of anger after an event like this and almost feeling compelled to file some sort of lawsuit to find some sort of compensation. maybe both mental and monetary.

life is fragile, all we can do is weigh the risks of our daily actions. i know if i had a family i would probably take the tags off my bike.
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Old 04-08-2013, 05:31 PM   #17
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I don't have an answer to your question, but I would like to express my condolences. I also wanted to thank you for sharing your story. If it makes you feel any better, I was so moved by it that I finally decided to get a life insurance (signed the papers today).

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life is fragile, all we can do is weigh the risks of our daily actions. i know if i had a family i would probably take the tags off my bike.
Though I understand, I respectfully disagree. Yes, there is an inherit risk riding a motorcycle, but one can die by just walking down the street... Maybe I'm saying this now that I don't have kids and maybe that may change in a year or two, but I don't think that we should quit doing what we like/love especially since I don't think anyone can change their destiny.
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Old 04-08-2013, 07:05 PM   #18
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Thank you, all!

Just a few days ago I was emailed a link to Martin Luther King Jr. memorial website to commemorate the date he was shot (April 4, 1968). On the website a quote stuck with me steeped in my sorrow over the motorcycle accident:

"You don't have anything to say about when you die. And you don't have anything to say about why you die. Or how you die. But you gonna die. Your only choice is what you die for." -MLK 1968

I keep thinking of this quote in relation to my friend and wondered why. He didn't really die for any great cause, wasn't leading folks when he went down or was martyred for any particular belief. And yet the quote lingered in my head.

Today I realize what King was referring to is not an examination of death so much as a comment on how we choose to live in the limited time we have left. That the foreknowledge of death's inevitability should inform us in our lives.

That was the key. My friend was indeed a generous man who raised kids of his own and fostered others. He was generous with his time and with his joy of motorcycling, sharing with me maps and info on local and state park riding trails with great enthusiasm after discovering his new neighbor also rides, and specifically rides dual-sports. He had a clear understanding of right and wrong yet never needed to impose his values on others. But above all I remember his infective but self deprecating smile always seemed to say, the hell with it, let's go riding.

His life was about spreading good and experiencing joy in his own way. Clearly one of his great joys in life was riding. While some may say that in the end motorcycles was the cause of his death, his partner and wife of 39 years knew better.

"He would have wanted it this way, to go out doing what he loved on a beautiful sunny day."

Our friend left us too soon. Those many, many friends and family he left behind that will mourn our loss for his sudden departure.
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Ed~ screwed with this post 04-08-2013 at 10:56 PM
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Old 04-09-2013, 06:02 AM   #19
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Every time I see someone riding ANY motorcycle, I asked god to watch out for them.

The road is crazy....
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Old 04-09-2013, 06:16 AM   #20
jimhaleyscomet
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I hope you can sue

I hope you can find a lawyer to sue because you have definitely been injured by the woman's actions. Only when it gets expensive for insurance companies to cover folks who should not be driving will they take steps to prevent these kind of accidents. Perhaps holding the insurance company accountable will help ease your pain.

It is not about bankrupting some 90 year old lady. It is about making the insurance company pay so perhaps the insurance companies start telling folks (either very inexperienced or very old or very distracted) that they should not be driving by quoting very high rates. Perhaps, they will start educating the policy holders to use their indicators and/or look for other vehicles.

I get that an elderly or inexperienced person may be capable of driving around low speed roads. But getting out on two way roads with speed limits in excess of 35 mph is very dangerous to them and to others.

Not signalling before cutting left across a two lane road is a serious failure of driving skills. But for some reason we give folks a "pass" when in fact what they did was vehicular man-slaughter. So I believe it is morally correct for you to sue but only if it eases your pain and helps you recover. Not if it turns into an ordeal that just increases your pain.

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Old 04-09-2013, 07:12 AM   #21
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Ed, it sucks that you had to see what you did. I know, I've seen friends get killed, maimed, and broken. I'll never get some of the scenes of horrible carnage out of my head. EVER. And also the knowledge of, that sometimes but for a couple of seconds one way or the other......it could have been me laying there.
I never once thought that someone should compensate me for what I witnessed. It's life. Sometimes you see nasty stuff that you'll never get out of your head. Everybody deals with stuff like this differently, and I suppose I may be a bit jaded by, what seems like a lifetime, of having the misfortune of seeing way too much very ugly stuff happen to other riders. Me first thought is, "glad it wasn't me".
Sounds cold, but I would think that in the deep recesses of every riders mind, most all think the same thing.
I don't know how large a part of your life riding is, but if it's a major part, get back on your bike and ride. I bet your friend would want you to.
If it's just sort of a part-time hobby, I guess that's a different story. To me there a huge difference between "living", and merely "existing". Do what makes you feel "alive". If it's "dangerous", well, LIFE is dangerous and ends in death 100% of the time whether you have fun during it or not.
For me, after some of the bad things I've seen, I found that taking a hike by myself up to the top of the highest point around ( I live in NJ, so there isn't anything to awful high ), just sit and look around at the wonder of it all.
When I check out I want people to all say............"Man, that fucker LIVED while he was here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
Feh, I'm blathering on.
I hope you feel better soon.
Peace to you and to your friends family.

Chris
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Old 04-09-2013, 07:18 AM   #22
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I think there are better ways to try and get old drivers retested then to sue an insurance company.
They will just increase everyones rates and be just as happy.

Not a bad WAY to go really, fast and doing something you love.
Sure seems like its better then lots of other ways to go.
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Old 04-09-2013, 09:13 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimhaleyscomet View Post
It is not about bankrupting some 90 year old lady. It is about making the insurance company pay...

That's not how it works.

The OP can't "sue the insurance company." He would have to sue the driver.

That being said... with all due respect to the OP, I don't see why we have to be so hands off about the driver. 90 years old or 19 years old, the driver KILLED A MAN. Outside of fighting in a war, how many of us have actually KILLED someone? She just murdered someone, and we have to be sensitive about her feelings?

If it were up to me, we'd have mandatory re-testing for EVERY driver, every time they have to renew their license. I don't think a once-a-decade written and practical test of one's abilities is much to ask for the freedom to operate a vehicle on public roads.

My deepest sympathies to the OP!

The sad fact is, culturally we do not regard emotional health the same as physical health. It's considered effete and weak to talk about how you feel. We don't bat an eye if someone takes medicine for a physical issue, but you're painted as some druggie or weakling if you dare to take medicine for an emotional issue.

Best of luck to you.
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Old 04-09-2013, 10:19 AM   #24
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Quote:
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She just murdered someone
...






"Murder is the unlawful killing, with malice aforethought, of another person, and generally this state of mind distinguishes murder from other forms of unlawful homicide (such as manslaughter)."
.
.
.
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Old 04-09-2013, 10:32 AM   #25
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Quote:
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"Murder is the unlawful killing, with malice aforethought, of another person, and generally this state of mind distinguishes murder from other forms of unlawful homicide (such as manslaughter)."

Fair point.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vehicular_homicide

Quote:
Vehicular homicide (also known as vehicular manslaughter) in most states in the United States, is a crime. In general, it involves death that results from the negligent operation of a vehicle...
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Old 04-09-2013, 11:08 AM   #26
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Quote:
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That qualifies.

Judges apparently don't trot that out too terribly often.

Wonder why?

I guess we will (eventually) see what the judge in this instance does.


Won't mitigate the tragedy in any way though, really...
.
.
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Old 04-09-2013, 12:17 PM   #27
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FYI: Definitions of murder and manslaughter vary by state.

Although, being a rider, I share some of the agnst regarding accidents and fatalities when drivers fail to recognize the presence of motorcycles, the fact is that such accidents cannot be sued, legislated or fined out of existence. Given the size and vertical nature of a rider's profile as well as the fact that most drivers' brains aren't really looking for motorcycles, such accidents, even with tested, competent (however you define that) drivers behind the wheel, will continue to occur. If you choose to ride then you assume the risk of such an accident happening to you. (or me of course) There are things a rider can do (hi-viz gear, aux lighting, riding technique, etc...) to mitigate the risk but it's still there.
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Old 04-09-2013, 12:43 PM   #28
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Quote:
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...such accidents cannot be sued, legislated or fined out of existence.
New York City has just renamed the police division responsible for investivation of collisions to the CRASH Investigation Squad, from "Accident" Investigation Squad, as part of a general change in some bad local policing issues here in NYC:

http://gothamist.com/2013/03/11/nypd...ges_to_cra.php

Sorry for perhaps jacking the thread. This sort of "awe-shucks / shit happens" attitude towards serious road collisions really burns me up.

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Old 04-09-2013, 02:38 PM   #29
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I wonder how many lives will be saved by changing the name. My guess is zero.

Despite your insinuation, my use of the term accident doesn't mean I don't take this type of occurrence seriously. As posted earlier in the thread I have seen a rider die on impact when T-boning a left-turner and I also take it very seriously as I recognize that it's a very real risk TO ME when I ride.
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Old 04-09-2013, 03:49 PM   #30
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I wonder how many lives will be saved by changing the name. My guess is zero.

Despite your insinuation, my use of the term accident doesn't mean I don't take this type of occurrence seriously. As posted earlier in the thread I have seen a rider die on impact when T-boning a left-turner and I also take it very seriously as I recognize that it's a very real risk TO ME when I ride.


I'm not insinuating anything about anything you said! Not interested in starting any fight in the OP's thread.

I'm just talking about a general attitude when it comes to traffic collisions.... "I didn't SEE him! It was an ACCIDENT!"

Anyway, yeah: Changing a name changes nothing. The AIS... errr... CIS is staffed with 19 officers for the WHOLE city of NYC. They show up only if someone is dead, or expected to die. Lose a leg? No AIS, if someone gets to you in time. Drunk driver? Speeding? Reckless? That's a civil matter. You're on your own.

Anyway, sympathy to the OP. He's really been hurt by this, regardless of what the current law says.
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