Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 29

Thread: How to communicate hazard ahead?

  1. #1

    How to communicate hazard ahead?

    Hi Everyone:

    I may put this in several outlets as I am curious as to what others do to warn on-coming riders of hazards ahead.

    Yesterday we rode the Buckhorn Canyon (northbound from Masonville) west of Fort Collins, CO. We came across a few short sections of the roadway that was covered in snow and ice, with melted water across the rest of the road. We picked our way through, but further ahead we could see the entire road was covered from edge to edge with snow and ice. Knowing the next miles were going to get worse given the increasing altitude and a canyon that remained in the shadow for another 1/2 mile, we turned around.

    A few miles later heading back towards Masonville a small group of superbikes went past us at a high-rate of speed heading towards the snow and ice covered road, but I couldn't think of a way to warn them of the hazards ahead. By us coming at them, they might interpret that the road ahead was clear.

    A few days before that it was a flock of roughly 40 turkeys all over the road and a on-coming Colorado State Patrol on his/her RT and last fall it was snow covering the exit of a corner and an on-coming vintage CB750F.

    I've been riding for decades and I'm familiar with common hand signals, but nothing about impending danger ahead, sometimes miles ahead.

    What, if anything, do you do to warn on-coming riders of hazards ahead?

    Jeff

  2. #2
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Spartanburg SC
    Posts
    174
    Quote Originally Posted by MountainRyder View Post
    Hi Everyone:

    I may put this in several outlets as I am curious as to what others do to warn on-coming riders of hazards ahead.

    Yesterday we rode the Buckhorn Canyon (northbound from Masonville) west of Fort Collins, CO. We came across a few short sections of the roadway that was covered in snow and ice, with melted water across the rest of the road. We picked our way through, but further ahead we could see the entire road was covered from edge to edge with snow and ice. Knowing the next miles were going to get worse given the increasing altitude and a canyon that remained in the shadow for another 1/2 mile, we turned around.

    A few miles later heading back towards Masonville a small group of superbikes went past us at a high-rate of speed heading towards the snow and ice covered road, but I couldn't think of a way to warn them of the hazards ahead. By us coming at them, they might interpret that the road ahead was clear.

    A few days before that it was a flock of roughly 40 turkeys all over the road and a on-coming Colorado State Patrol on his/her RT and last fall it was snow covering the exit of a corner and an on-coming vintage CB750F.

    I've been riding for decades and I'm familiar with common hand signals, but nothing about impending danger ahead, sometimes miles ahead.

    What, if anything, do you do to warn on-coming riders of hazards ahead?

    Jeff


    The practice in my area, or at least the folks I ride with, is to flash your headlights at least three times. It is also used to warn of a speed trap. If you wave down here in the south they might just think you're saying "HI".

  3. #3
    MOA #24991 Pauls1150's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    south of Los Angeles
    Posts
    3,072
    Left hand, forefinger pointing down to the road - move the hand up and down rapidly a few times - followed by a flat hand, palm forward (as in "slow down").

    Patrol ahead is a quick finger tap to the helmet, optionally followed by the flat palm.

  4. #4
    SURVIVOR akbeemer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Big Sky Country
    Posts
    8,704
    I do not think there is a universal signal to convey what you described. One might convey, "Slow Down" by holding the left hand out low and to the side with the palm down and raising and lowering the hand repeatedly, but that is not a universally recognized signal either. If you are convinced there is a life threatening hazard that other riders are unwittingly approaching, then stopping and waving your arms at approaching riders might be your best bet.
    Kevin Huddy
    Silver City, Montana
    MOA# 24,790 Ambassador

  5. #5
    Watch This!!! junkjohn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Cape Cod, MA
    Posts
    7,317
    Quote Originally Posted by akbeemer View Post
    I do not think there is a universal signal to convey what you described. One might convey, "Slow Down" by holding the left hand out low and to the side with the palm down and raising and lowering the hand repeatedly, but that is not a universally recognized signal either. If you are convinced there is a life threatening hazard that other riders are unwittingly approaching, then stopping and waving your arms at approaching riders might be your best bet.
    I always thought this was the signal to slow down and be aware, I've been doing this sense I started riding in the 70s. It seems to work. If I have the time, I also flash high beam first to get their attention.
    John Simonds
    2017 R 1200 GS Adventure
    1975 Norton Commando 850 Roadster Mk 3
    If it ain't broke, fix it 'till it is.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by junkjohn View Post
    I always thought this was the signal to slow down and be aware, I've been doing this sense I started riding in the 70s. It seems to work. If I have the time, I also flash high beam first to get their attention.
    ditto! And in my experience it seems to work. It at least seems to generate a WTF moment for the oncoming riders.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://web.bigbend.net/~glaves/

  7. #7
    Debbie's Servant Lee's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    SW Iowa
    Posts
    8,709
    Quote Originally Posted by akbeemer View Post
    I do not think there is a universal signal to convey what you described. One might convey, "Slow Down" by holding the left hand out low and to the side with the palm down and raising and lowering the hand repeatedly, .
    That's what I do and also put my four way flashers on.
    Lee
    2016 R1200RS
    MOA # 30878
    Past BMW Bikes: 2011 K1300S, 2003 K1200RS, 1991 K75S, 1987 K75T, 1984 R100RT

  8. #8
    Registered User GTRider's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Nibley, UT USA
    Posts
    1,998
    Quote Originally Posted by akbeemer View Post
    I do not think there is a universal signal to convey what you described. One might convey, "Slow Down" by holding the left hand out low and to the side with the palm down and raising and lowering the hand repeatedly, but that is not a universally recognized signal either. If you are convinced there is a life threatening hazard that other riders are unwittingly approaching, then stopping and waving your arms at approaching riders might be your best bet.
    Thatís the hand motion Iíve always used, on the theory that it at least conveys the ideas that there may be something notable ahead and a speed change might be warranted. Getting an oncoming rider to register those two points is about the best you can hope for, short of flagging him/her to a stop.

    Best,
    DeVern
    DGerber
    1983 R80ST ó 1984 R80 G/S-PD ó 2004 K1200GT w/Hannigan S/C ó 2010 K1300GT ó 2018 R1200GS
    BMWMOA#52184, AMA#271542, IBA#138

  9. #9
    Nick Kennedy
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Telluride Colorado
    Posts
    574
    AK Beemer's hand motion is what is acceptable in my neck of the woods.
    Also the Colorado State Patrol runs ads in the Paper asking people to flash there lights 3X for Deer and rocks etc.

    What about your fellow riders behind you?

    In our "Gang" its expected that the lead rider closely watches the road for obstacles. When he see's something he puts his hand down and out on the side the obstacle is and shakes or rotates his hand at it, giving warning to those behind something is there and you want to miss it.
    This is a nice mental break of sorts for those behind the lead rider at the time, good on long rides.
    Nick
    1990 K75 RT

  10. #10
    Thanks everyone for the responses, I appreciate your views!

  11. #11
    slave to gravity skibum69's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    New Melbourne, NL
    Posts
    3,777
    The palm down repeat has always been pretty universal to me with bikes and cars.
    http://beerthief.ca
    ITSteve: ride in peace my friend
    save $5 on a new SmugMug account, use this coupon 7frrnSRiTt9Fk

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by skibum69 View Post
    The palm down repeat has always been pretty universal to me with bikes and cars.
    I agree, but always wondered if it meant much if the obstacle was a number of miles farther down the road?

    If I get that motion from another and a mile goes by, I'd think that the risk/obstacle was not actually an obstacle to me or had moved on (i.e. wildlife that is no longer near the road).

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by nickrides View Post

    What about your fellow riders behind you?

    In our "Gang" its expected that the lead rider closely watches the road for obstacles. When he see's something he puts his hand down and out on the side the obstacle is and shakes or rotates his hand at it, giving warning to those behind something is there and you want to miss it.
    I do agree that the leader should be warning those behind them. For us, we rarely ride with others. I don't feel like we ride too aggressively, but I find that we are constantly having to wait for people to catch up all the time. And I mean All. The. Time.
    Last edited by MountainRyder; 02-12-2021 at 02:06 PM. Reason: grammar

  14. #14
    slave to gravity skibum69's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    New Melbourne, NL
    Posts
    3,777
    I take that gesture as meaning something that is not far away.
    http://beerthief.ca
    ITSteve: ride in peace my friend
    save $5 on a new SmugMug account, use this coupon 7frrnSRiTt9Fk

  15. #15
    Registered User bicyclenut's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Sugar Grove, IL
    Posts
    78
    Probably not as effective as some sort of immediate communication system for a hazard, but I have found that using the WAZE app on my phone can be a way of learning of hazards along the road as I am traveling and these can be especially valuable when traveling by motorcycle.

    Of course WAZE is great for warning you of that police trap ahead or the traffic slowdown ahead, but it can also give some advanced warning of the retread or object on the road that for an automobile could do damage, but for us motorcyclists could injure or even kill us. So running WAZE in the background and you see a warning such as a hazard on the road as you are speeding along the highway at 70MPH makes you even more alert to watch for this possible hazard, make sure my view of the road ahead is not blocked by cars ahead of us and be ready to slow down of take evasive action. It does depend on others to mark these issues to pop up in the app, but there have been a few times when I was on high alert for a large object in the road that the lack of attention to could have spelled disaster.

    However, when riding the bike, it does become difficult and sometimes impossible to mark these hazards while riding, but when I am driving I make an effort to do so, especially when I see something that by creating a warning would be of great help to either those in cars or on motorcycles.
    2010 BMW R1200RT
    2014 BMW C650GT (sold)
    MOA # 208387

Similar Threads

  1. Good Weekend Ahead
    By grendellion in forum Motorrad
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 07-08-2016, 12:12 PM
  2. Replies: 2
    Last Post: 02-16-2016, 02:25 AM
  3. Planning Ahead - NYC
    By tallyho in forum Regional Northeast
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 03-16-2010, 04:32 PM
  4. Go ahead laugh at me!
    By geobeemer in forum Campfire
    Replies: 23
    Last Post: 07-10-2009, 11:10 PM
  5. Booking ahead
    By jgsmith in forum Rally Forum
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 05-16-2007, 01:28 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •