Safety Question - Four-way flashers

Discussion in 'GS Boxers' started by bboshart, Jan 15, 2013.

  1. bboshart

    bboshart Been here awhile

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    I am travelling down the interstate when suddenly traffic comes to a halt or slows down significantly. My high visibility LED brake light is shining bright but until I am convinced that the traffic behind me is fully aware of the situation, I will flip on the four-way flashers. Good practice or bad practice? I recently became aware that its actually illegal in some places to have four-way flashers on while in motion. Don't really care about legality but rather in such situations, does it increase or decrease my safety? In addition, I am watching my mirrors and have my escape route planned.
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  2. Tonopah

    Tonopah Been here awhile

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    Seems like a good idea.
    I went with Hyperlites on my R12GS though. They flash whenever you use the brakes.
    One guy I met on a trip rode an '09 R12GS with some kind of rear red light set up that operated off a mercury switch so the lights flashed every time he decellerated regardless of whether he was using his brakes.
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  3. Multiplicity

    Multiplicity Been here awhile

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    Just stay the hell outta my way. Those 4-ways give me a target to fixate on, so don't slowdown and hold me up or I'll just run you over :rofl

    Really, I wouldn't be trying to control traffic and you would most likely be cited for it too. Don't play traffic controller. Just make sure to G.T.F.O.T.W. :1drink
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  4. everycredit

    everycredit Been here awhile

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    If more visibility = safer, then sure.
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  5. mcstark

    mcstark Living brappy...

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    I have seen a lot of Canadians do this on the road. I think it's a good idea, and the extra visibility might help to bring attention to your presence. I don't consider this trying to control traffic, just drawing attention to yourself. I would welcome a roadside chat with a LEO about my use of such a technique. Given a reasonable discussion I don't see how you would be cited.

    I too have Hyperlites, and those combined with the four ways should make approaching drivers say WTF?! and slow down.

    Of course, saying this...I also watch my mirrors like a hawk so I can get outta Dodge if I need to.
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  6. everycredit

    everycredit Been here awhile

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    Be safe, first and foremost.

    If there are any pilots here, I think they can vouch for any one of their checklists in an emergency situation:

    #1 Fly the plane

    So if the flashers go automatically, that's great. But make sure you have an escape route and steer your bike first and foremost. Engaging your four-way flashers is secondary to avoiding the accident and getting out of harm's way.
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  7. bboshart

    bboshart Been here awhile

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    Great advice!
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  8. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    I tend to flash my brakes until I am sure the guy behind me is slowing, so I am in the GOOD catagory.

    Jim :brow
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  9. Multiplicity

    Multiplicity Been here awhile

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    I know of a cager that stopped on the freeway after coming upon and accident. They were cited for stopping on the freeway without it being an emergency :freaky
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  10. def

    def Ginger th wonder dog

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    Same here.
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  11. scooteraug02

    scooteraug02 Dog Rancher

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    I did the flashers the other day. I was on a rural road and a school bus was stopped with flashers. The effers behind me were a ways back but going fast.

    The ticket on the freeway seems totally stupid. What if you stop to protect a body laying on the street. Nerd cop at max mental capacity.
    #11
  12. LaurelPerryOnLand

    LaurelPerryOnLand Long timer

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    When stopped:

    1. Leave at least 1 car's length between YOU and the vehicle ahead.
    Othewise...you have no way to get out!

    2. Monitor traffic BEHIND you to insure THEY are stopping.
    2A. Pump your brakes if you fail to see deceleration of the following vehicle.
    Note: Many cagers will actually change lanes when they see additional braking lights.

    3. Have a PLAN of ESCAPE.
    Into a ditch is better than into an ambulance.

    4. Leave your bike in GEAR ready to move in an instant.

    Ride safely.

    In Memorium:
    Liz Majors
    April 23, 2009
    Denver, CO
    #12
  13. everycredit

    everycredit Been here awhile

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    We can't speak about the competency of local law enforcement; keep the focus on your personal safety. :rofl
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  14. Multiplicity

    Multiplicity Been here awhile

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    Yep! When in doubt, PIN IT :rofl
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  15. max384

    max384 Bandaided

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    If I have time, I try to put my 4-ways on if in a sudden deceleration incident on a road, whether in my car or on my bike. It always catches my eyes when others do it, and I slow down faster than I otherwise would. Thus, I know it works (at least for some people).

    I'm all about visibility and doing what I can for others to notice me. When I started riding on the street I had all black leather gear, a black helmet, and a black bike with only a single headlight. I've been slowly transitioning to visibility with the more experience I get. I now ride with a hi-viz yellow vest, a mostly white helmet, yards and yards of reflective tape on my bike and luggage, dual headlights, and bright LED auxiliary lights I keep on at all times. Each time I've taken steps to increase my visibility I notice a decrease in cagers that don't notice me. It's scary to think of how often I was pulled out in front of when I first started riding as compared to now.

    IMO, anything you can do to increase your visibility to others is a good thing.
    #15
  16. tagesk

    tagesk Tuscan rider

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    Over Here, it is common (and thus more or less expected) to turn on your flashes if you are not merely braking but rather stopping.
    On the Autobahn, or here on the Autostrada, when you travel at 150 km/h you really want that information.
    And you really, really want the guy behind you to know that you're halting.

    A quick look will tell you that the vehicle behind you have the flashers on as well, and you know you're safe. Much weasier to spot that that it's speed has decreased.

    [TaSK]
    #16
  17. SR1

    SR1 Back in S. Korea

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    As Tagesk said, in Europe (and actually a lot of the rest of the world) it is standard practice.

    I am lightning quick on the "hazard" or four way button in all my cars/bike for this reason. Drilled in habit. If you've got a Lambo/Scaglietti/SLS/M5/whatever bearing down at you at 250kph (either it's Helmut or Habibi, they all drive fast as hell) you will do anything you can to tell him there's a slow-down. Of course, I haven't put on more than 1000 miles on any kind of vehicle in the US in about 5 years...
    #17
  18. bboshart

    bboshart Been here awhile

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    Interesting.. I did expect a favorable response to the use of hazard lights on a motorcycle forum. I received an opposite response on a car forum that I frequent. If you google the subject it would seem most opinion is that hazard lights should never be used when in motion (with the exception maybe of funeral processions and large trucks moving slow up a grade).
    #18
  19. tagesk

    tagesk Tuscan rider

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    Tried to Google in German or Italian (or French, Spanish, Norwegian......) ?

    [TaSK]
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  20. roadtrip22

    roadtrip22 Been here awhile

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    +1
    #20