Situational Awareness Riding

Situational Awareness can be described as Noticing, Understanding & Forecasting.

Situational Awareness Riding methodology is many different tools / behaviors that interconnect to empower the rider to prevent collisions by noticing (what is going on around us), understand (Assess the scene, what could it mean?), forecast (What could happen next?) These actions assist the rider in seeing, thinking, and acting their way through constantly changing conditions wherever the rider is going.
The most important habit we can learn in the concept of looking up is the habit we call 15 second view. The 15 second view is defined as the distance, measured in seconds, that a driver’s eyes lead the vehicle. In other words, you see ahead to where you will be in a given number of seconds.
The average rider looks only 3 to 6 seconds ahead of the vehicle. This is referred to as low aim steering. It denies the rider the time necessary to acquire information, forecast and act safely in response to hazards.

Look Up Techniques for Seeing Into The Future
Set your sights high. Look ahead to where your motorcycle will be at least 15 seconds into the future. At 30 miles per hour, a rider should see at least a block and a half ahead of their vehicle. Fifty miles per hour requires a driver to see nearly a quarter mile ahead Meters).
When possible, double your eye lead time to 30 seconds, looking three blocks ahead on surface streets, and a half mile ahead on highways.

Identify potential road hazards while there is still ample time to take evasive action if necessary.

Stay alert to the status of distant traffic lights. Pace yourself to avoid unnecessary stops and starts.

Let drivers ahead telegraph information to you. Sometimes their actions or brake lights can be warnings of a problem ahead which may not yet be visible to you.

At night, look well beyond your headlight spray.

Looking up while steering using a 15 second eye lead time is a habit that is only formed with constant practice. These techniques allow you increased time for forecasting and to make decisions.

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Mike Markham is a one-God, Jesus-name Apostolic. He serves as National Road Captain for the Azusa StreetRiders Motorcycle ministry (appointed in 2020 at the ASR national rally).

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