Motorcycle Intersection Tips! ~ MotoJitsu

In this video I give various tips when going through intersections. Much of the time it’s about having proper judgement when riding, predicting what may happen and be ready to respond to the environment. I encourage riders to slow down, be smart with your lane position, be aware of other people, watch the tires of cars, know your surroundings, cover your controls, and practice stopping and swerving.

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Comment (30)

  1. For anyone watching in the UK, or planning to ride here, do NOT flash your headlights when approaching an intersection. It will be interpreted as you giving way, and there is a very good chance that it will make the other driver pull out in front of you.
    (Strictly speaking, the Highway Code says flashing headlights is a warning of your presence, but in practice it has always been used as a 'go ahead, I'm giving way' signal.)

  2. Getting you motorcycle license in my country swerving is one of the exercise you have to master.
    When swerving the only control you are allowed to touch is the gas.
    You roll it all the way back and do not use brakes or clutch.
    We have to do it at 30 mph swerve around a 2 meter obstacle within 15 meters and get back to your side within 10 meters.

  3. We all have our own way and do what works for us. Just sharing for consideration of an alternative along with the rationale: I swerve back and forth to give the car a reason to wonder what I am doing and make my headlight dance, then go to lane position #3 if there isn't a car waiting to pull out from the right or lane position #2 if there is. Lane position #1 gives you the least reaction time. Additionally, you have less closing angle so the car can't judge your speed as well as they can if you are in lane position #3.

  4. If I'm driving on a 50 mph road and I need to make a right turn on the street coming up and the stop light is still green… how fast should I be going while making the right turn? I just got my Scout Bobber last weekend so I'm new to these things. I took the Motorcycle safety Course nine months ago but I don't remember them covering things like this. Thanks for the help and I love your videos.

  5. another great video ..one thing I was taught from an instructor was to wobble your head light by very short/quick pushes on the handle bars (counter steering ) to make the headlight wobble ….the instructors view was that the headlight flash may signal to the car driver to go ahead…

  6. Yeah..I'd be more comfy honking my horn as a way to get their attention. Flashing lights down in Mississhity tells the other motortist one of three things most often : 1. cop ahead. 2. turn your lights on because it's either late evening or nighttime..stupid. 3. Go already.

    Unfortunately number 3 is the primary reason because it seems like most drivers down on that shithole of a state are way too impatient and hyped up on caffeine, alcohol, or if roids ( if a cop). I've lived there my entire life and been driving a car since 94'.

    Keeping intersections in mind was the first thing I began reading up about and talking about to the more experienced bikers in my area before I bought my first motorcycle. fatalities happen at intersections for bikers most often.

  7. I wonder if there is a headlight modulator that would alternate your high and low beams when switched ON. That way it wouldn't be just a one-time signal to another person so they don't get confused as to whether or not you're flashing them so they can go first. 🤔

  8. Just as a warning to any international viewers watching – flashing lights in the suggested manner in intersections in Europe would be HIGHLY DANGEROUS…

  9. There's a technique I use when moving through a busy intersection that's similar to a "post" move in basketball… I'll use a car as a shield by riding in their "shadow", that is, position myself in on the road, relative to a car moving in the same direction as me. It's a delicate balance to be not too close and in their blind spot, but close enough that another car can't sneak in between me and the car I'm shadowing. When I combine that sort of thinking, with the high viz gear, my super bright 500K auxiliary lighting, lane positioning, escape routes, situational awareness and good ole video game paranoia… I feel like I have a chance to reach old(er) age in style.
    Thanks for confirming many of my current habits, and introducing new skills and thinking.
    Being conscious of these safeguards actually increases my enjoyment of riding… it's like a chess game, and helps to set the normal, not-riding concerns of life aside while I'm on the bike, and be fully in the moment and experience of riding.

  10. Here's a story from my Binghamton, NY newspaper on 7/31/2018 that supports your discussion: "The Broome County Sheriff's Office, said a 1998 Harley Davidson motorcycle was traveling south on Route 7 while a 2003 Suzuki car was traveling north. The car turned left onto Montrose Drive, directly in front of the motorcycle. The motorcycle struck the passenger side of the Suzuki. The impact pushed the Suzuki into a 2003 Jeep that was sitting stationary on Montrose Drive waiting to enter Route 7. The motorcyclist sustained serious injuries and was transported to Wilson Hospital. Neither of the drivers of the other vehicles were injured. The Suzuki operator was issued a traffic ticket for failure to yield to a motorcyclist."

  11. I dip the bike moving to lane position C, far right, slow a bit and cover the brakes. Changing lane positions provides movement to the oncoming driver, being in position C, the driver has to proceed further into the intersection, adding a few extra seconds. I don’t like intersections.

  12. Just learned a lesson. Safety vest I had tucked under passengers handle came loose and got caught up in back brake while turning off ramp. Back wheel locked up for a moment. Note to self: Secure load.

  13. Another great video. I really love your drawings, they make it much clearer and easier to understand than if you actually were riding thought the intersection, as there are so many things to take notice of and so many split-second decisions to be made, in such circumstances. You'd literally have to freeze the video footage every couple of frames. Well done again! Ride on!

  14. I also watch the tires! Plus my motivation for learning about counter steering was to be able to swerve around stuff. Using my headlights either flicking them or switching to just hi beam is also one of my tactics. Here in the land of the old, you get to see a lot of strange actions at intersections and cross overs. So I wear all the gear all the time. On my list of upgrades is a headlight and brake light modulator. I had a brake light modulator that folks would pull up next to me and say how cool that thing worked. It was deceleration sensing. The harder I was braking the brighter and faster it blinked. Totally going to find the current day version of that.

  15. Another good idea is, once you re through the intersection, let everything go – don't dwell on how stupid the offending driver was, etc. Carry on, and resume your ride!

  16. Hi Greg, thanks once again for these points on intersections. Bottom line, I approach any coming vehicle as a potential danger. Change lane placement, have an active awareness of my surroundings. I have a F700GS with fog lights, brake modulator, hi viz gear. Very good points the ones you touched, at the end it's you taking responsibility for what surrounds you and have a plan to deal with the variables. Good job!

  17. Good video … speed is a big deal… car drivers cannot clearly comprehend your approach speed and distance … plus even a relatively small increase in speed increases the impact significantly.

  18. Don't know if it's different in US but, for us in France, flashing the brights often means we're letting the car pass 🙂 just to say ! Anyway it's a good topic and again a good video ! 🙂

  19. Dear Eddie, I would never presume to tell a Marine, be he US or Royal, what to do but l will certainly offer a bit of advice. In the
    UK, although the legal document, the Highway Code states flashing your headlights means “l am here”. It is in reality taken by all drivers as you giving right of way to the other vehicle. I would consider this action suicidal. All your other points are spot on however. Thanks for all you hard work on our behalf.

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