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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-21-2004, 10:26 PM Thread Starter
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No wonder we all get a bad name

This is out of the tribune... when I get a copy of the article I will edit and post up. WTF???

Quote:
From the Tribune
New breed of bikers rides into danger zone

More motorcyclists are dying in wrecks as the sales of sport bikes surge across the country

By Jon Yates and Russell Working
Tribune staff reporters
Published September 21, 2004

Patrick Thompson says he doesn't drink, smoke marijuana or snort cocaine. Instead he gets his highs racing his Honda motorcycle at speeds of more than 150 miles an hour, or zipping in and out of expressway traffic at 125 m.p.h.

"It's just like a crackhead," said Thompson, who is recovering from a high-speed accident that left both arms in casts. "You can't really understand why this guy gets high, even though it's destroying his life. But he does it because of the reality he has to live through. You escape reality by the speed of the bike."

He is lucky to have survived his June wreck. At least seven people have died in motorcycle accidents in Cook County since Aug. 31, including a high-speed crash that killed South Side resident Jesse Cooper on South Lake Shore Drive early Monday, according to police.

Witnesses said Jesse Cooper was thrown into the air and hit a light pole in the 500 block of South Lake Shore Drive when his speeding motorcycle drifted and hit a curb, police said. Police said they did not know if Cooper was wearing a helmet.

While not all accidents are the fault of the riders, police are alarmed by growing numbers of bikers traveling in packs, zipping between cars on late-night rides--a scene that some say has become more common on Chicago-area interstates as manufacturers produce faster bikes marketed to younger riders.

With top speeds exceeding 150 miles per hour, the "crotch rockets" or sport bikes have become the motorcycles of choice for groups of men and women who take to the highways after dark, when cars are few and the roads open.

Across Chicago and the United States, dozens of new motorcycle groups have sprung up in the last year, fueled in part by the popularity of such movies as "Torque" and "Biker Boyz" that glorify the ultra-fast bikes and the motorcycle culture.

While most of the groups stress safety and say they adhere to the law, police worry the buzz of speeding, swarming motorcycles will increase.

"It's a huge concern," said Chicago police spokesman Pat Camden, who calls the sport motorcycles "[organ] donor cycles." "We're seeing more of them and they're becoming more deadly."

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 3,661 motorcycle fatalities occurred in the United States last year, a 12 percent increase over 2002. In Illinois, 143 motorcyclists were killed in 2003, up from 100 the year before.

Experts attribute the increase to record-breaking motorcycle sales and the emerging emphasis on speed.

Ralph Storino lost control of his Honda CBR 900 while trying to pass a car on the left median of the Stevenson Expressway. Police said he was going at least 90. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

James Sumler died when he hit a retaining wall on the Dan Ryan Expressway on Aug. 31. Witnesses estimated he was riding his sleek, powerful Kawasaki ZX 900 motorcycle at more than 100 miles per hour. He died instantly.

According to Illinois State Police, Sumler was traveling at about 100 miles per hour at 1:40 a.m. when he came upon a stopped semi-truck in a congested construction zone on the Dan Ryan near 79th Street.

State Trooper Angelo Mollo said Sumler, 39, of Chicago, tried to stop but couldn't. When he hit the retaining wall, Sumler was ejected from his bike, which then slid under the semi, Mollo said.

Members of the motorcycle group Sumler was riding with dispute police accounts, saying he was not riding nearly that fast.

Meanwhile, emergency room physicians are left to shake their heads over patients who can end up brain-damaged, quadriplegic or paralyzed after high-speed motorcycle accidents.

Yet even in crashes over 100 m.p.h., helmets can save lives, said Dr. Martin Lucenti, an emergency room physician and assistant professor at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine.

"Even at 150 m.p.h., you can roll and you can slide," Lucenti said. "Most helmets will take pretty significant blows up to 40 m.p.h. If you can get enough slowing just from friction as you slide, you can actually decelerate to the point where that helmet makes a very significant difference in terms of prognosis."

Local motorcycle group leaders acknowledge that some riders thrive at full-throttle, but say spectacular crashes like the ones that killed Sumler and Storino are rare and create an unfair stereotype among police and the public that all bikers are reckless.

George Riddles, leader of Number One Stunnas, a local motorcycle group that formed last year and has about 200 members, emphasizes safe driving, but he understands the thrill of riding fast. He said he used to race his motorcycle at high speeds on city roads. But over time, three of his friends died in high-speed crashes, and he swore off it.

"One of them--this was a couple of years ago--was doing 130, 140 and lost control of a turn and ran straight into a wall," Riddles said.

Still, Riddles said most bikers are law-abiding, and he estimates that only 25-30 percent of bikers drive at extreme high speeds.

"We're just getting a bad rap," he said. "There are guys out there doing dangerous stuff...but it's not everybody."

Less than two weeks after Sumler died, Storino, 35, of Lemont, was killed in a similar accident.

State police said Storino was riding at about 90 miles per hour on the Stevenson Sept. 13 when he lost control at about 11:40 p.m.

A state police spokesman said Storino hit the left retaining wall, was thrown from his bike and struck a utility pole.

Storino's cousin, Luis Duran, said Storino was a soft-spoken father of two who loved convertible cars and motorcycles.

Like Sumler, Storino had gotten off work late from his job at a window store in Downers Grove and had gone out for a night ride.

An experienced biker who had grown up riding dirt bikes, Storino rode whenever he could, Duran said, making the most out of Chicago's short riding season.

Although he took off alone on the night he died, Storino either met up with other bikers or came upon them as he rode, Duran said.

"He really didn't ride with a bunch of guys or anything like that," Duran said. "He wasn't a trouble-maker...Sometimes it just kind of found him."

Industry observers say there has not been a comprehensive study on motorcycle accidents in almost two decades, making it difficult to determine what is fueling the national increase in fatalities.

But some experts point to the combination of faster bikes, younger riders and growing popularity.

Mike Mount, a spokesman for the Motorcycle Industry Council, said motorcycle sales have increased each year for more than a decade. Last year, the industry set a record, selling more than 1.5 million motorcycles in the United States alone. Through June of this year, sales were up 12.6 percent compared with the same period in 2002, Mount said.

From 1995 to 2003, national sales of sport bikes grew 139 percent, part of the rapid increase in motorcycle sales overall, Mount said, putting that category of bikes third behind traditionally popular cruisers and touring bikes.

Don Brown, an industry expert at DJB Associates in Irvine, Calif., said motorcycle companies are producing faster sport bikes because that is what younger riders want.

"They're more powerful, they go faster, they make a lot of noise, which is not good for the industry," Brown said. "A lot of these young guys don't realize, they'll go on the freeway and they'll go by cars in a flash. Some poor little old lady driving down the street, it scares them half to death."

The new bikes can create bad public relations for the industry, but the emphasis on speed is neither new nor specific to motorcycles.

"I think it has always been there," Brown said. "The facts are [that] there are a whole range of products aimed at that element of our psychology."

Thompson, who ended up with both arms in casts, said he has learned a lesson from his crash: He won't weave in and out of traffic. But he still plans to drive fast--very fast--on his bike.

"We're still riding like idiots," Thompson said. "I know that, but I just get a high from it."

Ride smart... stupid hurts.

Everyone crashes. Some get back on. Some don't. Some can't...

Godspeed 788!!! We miss you!

Last edited by Deuces; 09-21-2004 at 10:36 PM.
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-21-2004, 10:27 PM Thread Starter
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I hate stupid people... they should have to wear signs that say "I'm Stupid"!

Ride smart... stupid hurts.

Everyone crashes. Some get back on. Some don't. Some can't...

Godspeed 788!!! We miss you!
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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-21-2004, 10:59 PM
 
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some people just dont know there toughts sometimes are worthless..
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 12:22 AM
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I have a journalism class....my teacher even writes articles for the Chicago Tribune, she saw my helmet today and busted out the phrase "the only difference between wearing a helmet and not wearing a helmet is open or closed casket." Her name is Batlivala if you ever see it in there.
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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 12:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by jimzx9r
I have a journalism class....my teacher even writes articles for the Chicago Tribune, she saw my helmet today and busted out the phrase "the only difference between wearing a helmet and not wearing a helmet is open or closed casket." Her name is Batlivala if you ever see it in there.
I hate that phrase...it's so stupid.

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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 12:38 AM
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The media distorts the truth so much, it's pathetic
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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 12:39 AM
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the combination of media sensationalism and stupid riders has deffinatley givin sportriders a bad rep!!! but if you think about it, motorcyclists have had a bad rep ever since their conception!!

it really bugs me how the media jacks these stories up to sell news because just the other day one of my boss's, who knows nothin bout motorcycles, tells me as im leavin " dont go ridin like that dumbass idiot that got himself killed on the highway the other night"! I just wanted to punch him straight in the mouth because he said it with a lil snicker and grin, like he did'nt even care that a man with a wife and kids lost his life tragically!!! He was just focused on the medias propaganda which is training him to look at sportriders as dumbass's and criminals!!!

I am what I am, and I do what I do!!
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 12:55 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally posted by apex
the combination of media sensationalism and stupid riders has deffinatley givin sportriders a bad rep!!! but if you think about it, motorcyclists have had a bad rep ever since their conception!!

it really bugs me how the media jacks these stories up to sell news because just the other day one of my boss's, who knows nothin bout motorcycles, tells me as im leavin " dont go ridin like that dumbass idiot that got himself killed on the highway the other night"! I just wanted to punch him straight in the mouth because he said it with a lil snicker and grin, like he did'nt even care that a man with a wife and kids lost his life tragically!!! He was just focused on the medias propaganda which is training him to look at sportriders as dumbass's and criminals!!!
My boss just gave me the same don't ride like a dumbass speech. He has never and will never ride a motorcycle. He laso gives a little snicker when I gear up. I hate how people generalize sport bikers.

Ride smart... stupid hurts.

Everyone crashes. Some get back on. Some don't. Some can't...

Godspeed 788!!! We miss you!
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 01:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Deuces
My boss just gave me the same don't ride like a dumbass speech. He has never and will never ride a motorcycle. He laso gives a little snicker when I gear up. I hate how people generalize sport bikers.
++1

I am what I am, and I do what I do!!
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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 01:05 AM
 
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This article pisses me off so much and makes me want to just jump on my bike and....

Son of a bitch, they're RIGHT! LOL!

I'm j/k, obviously this/these guys are morons. It's true that the few give the rest a bad name. It's just like anything else.

-Jeff-
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post #11 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 02:35 AM
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My boss used to give me all kinds of crap...saying how bikes are a lot of fun while you ride them...just make sure they don't ride you.

I've heard it all and I'm sick of it.
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post #12 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 05:49 AM
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And the continues, like the article reads, they haven't done a comprehensive study on motorcycle fatalities in 10 years, but the article immediately suggests to the reader, that it's younger riders with sport bikes causing the rise in fatalities. Classical yellow journalism! I bet when they do another study, they will find that riders involved in motorcycle accidents, will be male, white 40 to 50 years in age, type of motorcycle involved in the accident, will be a cruiser, but hell they won't print that! That won't sell papers, or inflame the public, because it's more exciting to read about some (god, will Ken edit my post again? ) idiot, smearing himself against a concrete barrier at 100 mph!

Hmmmm does anyone know the percentage of sportbike riders compared to the total amount of motorcycle riders in the country? It has to be a small percentage Somewhere, someone has to be keeping stats on what type of motorcycle was involved in the accident?

Sometimes goodbye is your second chance.

Last edited by RickC1957; 09-22-2004 at 06:50 AM.
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post #13 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 06:24 AM
 
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"While most of the groups stress safety and say they adhere to the law, police worry the buzz of speeding, swarming motorcycles will increase."

WTF - so first she's saying we promote safety...then basically counters the statement.


At one point she says accidents are up 10%.... but on the other hand later in the article she states that sales are up 12%. But she never puts the 2 together because it doesn't support her point. If those 2 facts are true...the accident RATE is actually decreasing.

Did anyone stop the think that there are more accidents because more people are riding these bikes? What about fatal car accidents in that same period of time?


Thsi all remnds me of school shootings. A couple kids open up at at the school down south (Columbine) and suddenly all guns are dangerous more damgerous than before, every time a kid brings a gun to school it's front page news... which is fine, that's a serious problem... but nobody gave a flying **** until the Columbine massacre.
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post #14 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 06:26 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by RickC1957
And the continues, like the article reads, they haven't don't a comprehensive study on motorcycle fatalities in 10 years, but the article immediately suggests to the reader, that it's younger riders with sport bikes causing the rise in fatalities.

This is what I would also normally assume.... but in reality... the last 2 high profile acidents were both riders over 35 with families I beleive.
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post #15 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 06:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by cherrypicker
This is what I would also normally assume.... but in reality... the last 2 high profile acidents were both riders over 35 with families I beleive.
I do believe that is called a "statistical anomaly" which people love pointing out, but in actuality are usually dropped from studies, because no one understands them.

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post #16 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 07:24 AM
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When people start harping on my motorcycle riding
I usually ask if they smoke or have an excessive (sp?)weight problem, as the risk for either of those killing them is higher then riding a motorcycle

I also let them know I am bringing this to their attention as I consider their comments just as rude.

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post #17 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 07:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ohfugit
When people start harping on my motorcycle riding
I usually ask if they smoke or have an excessive (sp?)weight problem, as the risk for either of those killing them is higher then riding a motorcycle

I also let them know I am bringing this to their attention as I consider their comments just as rude.
I like that repsonse.... I might use that one.

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post #18 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 07:37 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ohfugit
When people start harping on my motorcycle riding
I usually ask if they smoke or have an excessive (sp?)weight problem, as the risk for either of those killing them is higher then riding a motorcycle

I also let them know I am bringing this to their attention as I consider their comments just as rude.
Good point

Riding a motorccyle, overeating, smoking, heavy drinking are all lifestyle choices that pose health risks. Riding a motorcyle is the lesser of the 3.
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post #19 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 07:55 AM
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I like how they focus on how motorcycles are constantly traveling atspeeds over 100 mph, do they not think cars are doing the same thing, causing a greater risk, to more people per incident?SUV's come to mind

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post #20 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 08:02 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by 6nickyfan9
I like how they focus on how motorcycles are constantly traveling atspeeds over 100 mph, do they not think cars are doing the same thing, causing a greater risk, to more people per incident?SUV's come to mind

It doesn't take an engineer ot realize that a 5000lb SUV or 3000lb car or 4000lb minivan traveling at 80-85 mph is much more dangerous that a high performance 600lb (with rider) motorcycle traveling at 100mph.

Which do you see more often. A BMW or Mercedes going 90mph in he left lane, or a motorcycle travelign at 100+ when your crusing down the Tristate?
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post #21 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 09:15 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally posted by cherrypicker

At one point she says accidents are up 10%.... but on the other hand later in the article she states that sales are up 12%. But she never puts the 2 together because it doesn't support her point. If those 2 facts are true...the accident RATE is actually decreasing.
But that would show that a majority of people are riding safer... and we can't have the public believe that about the dangerous sport-bikes, now can they.

Ride smart... stupid hurts.

Everyone crashes. Some get back on. Some don't. Some can't...

Godspeed 788!!! We miss you!
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post #22 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 09:35 AM
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So 7 motorcyclists died in the last month in Cook County. I'd be awfully curious to see how many auto fatalities there were because I have a feeling there isn't going to be a big difference.
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post #23 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 11:12 AM
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The majority of accidents happening across the US as reported in motorcycle industry publications is between the ages of 40-50 years old. It is mostly due to people getting back into the sport of motorcycling after a while off from riding. I would like to see a study or research done on the number of Harley/alcohol accidents. I would like to see how many of these happen each year compared to other types of accidents.
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post #24 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 11:30 AM
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This is a stupid article. She focuses on younger riders but the two examples she uses are riders in their mid 30's. Also, the point about accidents being up 10% and sales being up 12% doesn't support her article.

But like previously posted motorcycle and motorcyclists have always gotten a bad rap. The History Channel had a good program about the public view of bikers in the 40's, 50's, and 60's. It was pretty much the same view as people nowadays have of us. But instead of choppers and HD's we ride sport bikes.

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post #25 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-22-2004, 11:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Schiernbeck
The majority of accidents happening across the US as reported in motorcycle industry publications is between the ages of 40-50 years old.

The following link is for the HURT Report.

http://www.magpie.com/nycmoto/hurt.html

Please take note of #20.

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