Browse Publications Technical Papers 2014-01-0478

Time and Distance Required for a Motorcycle to Turn Away from an Obstacle 2014-01-0478

The evasive capabilities of motorcycles and riders are often an important consideration when analyzing a motorcycle crash. Specifically, the longitudinal distance or time required for a motorcycle to move laterally some distance can be of critical interest. Previous publications on this topic have not all measured the same thing and have often included limited test data so their results can be difficult to compare or apply. In addition to reviewing some of the literature on the topic, this paper will present the results of a series of tests conducted with four riders on four motorcycles swerving 2 m (6.5 ft) to their left after passing through a gate at speeds of 40 to 88 km/h (25 to 55 mi/h).
The most recent testing involved relatively skilled riders who had faster transitions and greater willingness to lean than the “average” rider generally described in the literature. Separating the perception-reaction time from the evaluation of the turn-away maneuver itself simplifies the analysis, though wide individual performance variation still exists.


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