This Indian video shows a lucky rider narrowly avoiding a crash after slipping in a line of oil and possibly diesel left on the road most likely by an old truck.
There are several mistakes the KTM RC200 rider makes that lead to the incident. They provide some good lessons for all riders to learn.
Go to 1:30 minutes to see the incident.
The first mistake is that the rider is using the full width of both left-hand lanes, rather than staying in the one lane.
That’s fine if it was a race track, but not on a public road.
The result is that he dangerously passes blindly on the left of vehicles and frequently crosses the white lines which can be slippery and could lead to a low-side crash.
Trucks mean oil
The KTM rider should also have been on the lookout for oil.
An Austroads 2015 Motorcycle In-Depth Crash Study report found that slippery substances on the road account for 13% of single-vehicle crashes.
In this case, the incident occurred on Shillong Rd in the mountainous north-east of India. It is a winding tar road that is a Mecca for motorcycle riders.
However, as you can see from the YoutTube video, it also has a lot of car and truck traffic. Most of those trucks are old clangers that are likely to be dropping oil and diesel.
As anyone who has been to the Subcontinent will know, truck drivers are a law unto themselves and don’t stay in their lanes.
They wander from lane to lane, dropping oil all over the place.
In this case, the oil line runs from the right lane across the centre line into the left lane.
Whenever a rider sees a lot of trucks, especially old trucks, they should be on the lookout for dark oil lines and patches.
And don’t expect them to be in the centre of the lane only.
What is surprising is that the rider doesn’t lose the front end.
Instead, the back end slips, which means he was accelerating through the corner as he was trying to get his knee down.
Leave knee-down antics to the track where you know there will be no loose gravel or oil spills.
On the road, lean with the bike, rather than leaning out further.
Pull the clutch
The rider was lucky he didn’t high side as the rear end slid then regained traction as it moved out of the line of oil.
We don’t know wether he pulled the clutch, but that is what he should have done to take power away from the spinning rear wheel.
Instead, he shifted his weight back on to the bike and put a foot down for correction.
That immediately sent him wide, crossing dangerously into the left lane. Luckily it was vacant.
Learn from your mistakes
The worst mistake the rider makes is that e doesn’t learn from his mistakes.
He continues to try to get his knee down, crossing white lines in the centre and even the edge of the road, blindly barging through the traffic and even ending up on another line of oil!
If you have a scare like this, pull over and calm down.
Adrenalin will be pumping through your body which could lead to making rash decisions and poor use of the controls.
Pull over, take a moment to thank your god, consider what you did wrong and learn from your mistakes.
Hopefully the 800k+ people who have so far watched this video since it was posted on March 21 will learn something.