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Author Topic: Fatalities in LSR  (Read 75715 times)

Offline scott g

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #300 on: May 11, 2018, 04:54:04 AM »


Has anybody ever compiled a list of tracks
 and their respective shutdown areas?


I do not believe anybody has done that,
and it would probably be a nice "project"
for somebody..................

In the meantime, someone can use google
earth to look at the few remaining tracks to
 get an estimate of the distances available.



Offline Ali123

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #301 on: May 12, 2018, 08:12:13 PM »
this is a great idea... maybe the best idea to come from this thread

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #302 on: May 13, 2018, 03:43:31 AM »
AI  are you planning on attending Loring this year?
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Offline Frank06

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #303 on: May 13, 2018, 04:34:11 AM »
I've started compiling a list of some of the tracks.  I hope to generate a spreadsheet showing how much distance is consumed if you wait a certain distance past the finish before starting to brake (obviously as a function of speed), and what kind of deceleration is required at that point to get slowed down enough to safely exit.  Summer is here though and I haven't done much the past couple of weeks.

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Offline fj1289

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #304 on: May 19, 2018, 10:59:24 AM »
I think ONE thing they could do would be have the racer be able to communicate with their crew WHILE they are racing..... maybe if someone YELLED in their ear.... the "tunnel" would disappear.... some simple Bluetooth communications... that would tells us that it wasn't a medical event at least... or at least that they can talk.... just a thought...... no?

I agree this could be a good “alarm system” - even if it is just an alarm of some type triggered by the finish line   

BUT it still may not be enough for all situations.  Aircraft with retractable landing gear have warning systems (usually a LOUD gear warning horn) designed to alert the pilot if they attempt to land gear up.  There have been several instances in investigations where the pilot responds that they couldn’t hear the controller in the tower telling them to go-around (not land) because they couldn’t hear them over the horn!

Tunnel vision type episodes are deadly in aviation too - and not just in the landing phase. 

We are putting together a second bike this year for my son.  He’s 19 and has ridden dirt bikes - not street bikes.  I’ve been working out how to train him up - how to build the experiences necessary for him to start racing safely and smartly.  And to make sure he knows that every run can be aborted and tried again - even if you have to wait another year.   

Offline scott g

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #305 on: May 23, 2018, 06:14:30 PM »
Not everybody just holds it open......................

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XTfKJFrUi9w

Offline Ali123

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #306 on: May 24, 2018, 04:01:13 PM »
AI  are you planning on attending Loring this year?
u askin me? ive never been.......

Offline scott g

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #307 on: June 20, 2018, 10:15:36 AM »
The question of "why" keeps coming up.

I was recently asked by another Motorcycle Safety Professional:

"     I wonder if the April fatality had any bearing on the decision by
the airport owners to not allow speed trials?  Sad, it was a well run
event.  When Mike and Marsha promoted open road racing their events were
always a cut above. "


I responded:

We inside the sport have a little different view of
"running long" than do outsiders. 
We may be hampered by our familiarity.

We can understand the "fixation,"
and the "loss of focus."

From a purely operational view, it is not always
 creditable why a rider would not "shut off."

If the throttle is "stiff," just twist it closed. 
All modern bikes have dual cables for just this reason.

If the bike continues to "race the engine,"  hit the kill button. 
Cars do not have kill buttons, and really don't need them. 
"stuck throttles" are WHY bikes have kill buttons in the first place.

If the throttle fails, and the kill button fails, pull in the clutch lever.
Sure it's hard to do that, and "lose" the engine to over revving,
but what's the alternative ?

What are the odds of ALL THREE safety systems failing ?

a mechanical engineer and statistician could tell us.

It would be near zero.

These needless deaths and crashes, in the face of the above,
must be telling "outsiders" that either bikes cannot be operated safely;
or we cannot police riders to do so.

In either case, these things represent unacceptable risk.

It is easy to understand an insurer or a landlord
frowning on continuing the unsafe activity.

It could be the final point in a discussion
of whether or not to renew a contract.............

Happy Fathers Day to all........

Scott

Offline Frank06

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #308 on: June 21, 2018, 08:00:20 AM »
Scott, do you know if anybody has ever compiled a list of Best Practices for riding LSR events?  I've heard different techniques mentioned by different folks once through the lights.  I suspect we all do what we think is "best" for our particular circumstances but I've heard some scary things.

Without a proper accident investigation following a crash it's hard to implement change.  Maybe we should make a list of risky actions or situations and work from that to develop some sort of recommendation or standard.

??
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Online FlaminRoo

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #309 on: June 22, 2018, 05:12:48 PM »
Taken from a post on the Landspeed.com site regards motorcycles running off end of track at the Mojave Mile,,

"Thay go into the "Bonneville Tuck" and stare at the ground through their armpit instead of looking ahead at the 15' flags marking every quarter mile, the six RED flags marking the finish line, AND the three 10' flashing red LED light towers spaced 600' apart and which are so bright you can see them from the startline",, etc,etc,,



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Offline scott g

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #310 on: June 23, 2018, 09:38:32 AM »
Scott, do you know if anybody has ever compiled a list of Best Practices for riding LSR events? 

I've heard different techniques mentioned by different folks once through the lights. 

I suspect we all do what we think is "best" for our particular circumstances
but I've heard some scary things.



Thanks for a great observation, 06..............

The concept of "best practices" is moving quickly from
nothing to almost every industry and profession.

"best practice" is applied to changing a flat on your car
to medical operations, traffic planning and building design.

The process of deciding the "best practice" is sometimes
thorny, but with perseverance, can be arrived at.

I have never seen the term Best Practices applied to riding LSR,
but there are plenty of mentions in the literature.

About 10-15 years ago, it was made a rule that riders MUST
keep both hands on the bars, except for emergencies. 
This rule was reflected in other associations.

More thinking in my next post.

Offline scott g

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #311 on: June 23, 2018, 09:55:00 AM »
Taken from a post on the Landspeed.com site regards motorcycles running off end of track at the Mojave Mile,,

"Thay go into the "Bonneville Tuck" and stare at the ground through their armpit instead of looking ahead at the 15' flags marking every quarter mile, the six RED flags marking the finish line, AND the three 10' flashing red LED light towers spaced 600' apart and which are so bright you can see them from the startline",, etc,etc,,

Good research Roo...............

I think we benefit by the FULL quote:

"What makes the airport runway races so deadly for motorcyclists?

Neither.

They go into the "Bonneville Tuck" and stare at the ground through their armpit instead of looking ahead at the 15' flags marking every quarter mile, the six RED 15' flags marking the finish line, AND the three 10' flashing red LED light towers spaced 600' apart telling them the run is over and which are so bright you can see them from the starting line.  The fact that the last two riders who have gone off did this is not in dispute; we watched them from the finish line until they went off, as we do for all racers.  Neither one of them ever looked up until it was too late.  The 2016 rider realized his mistake about 100' from the end of the runway and attempted a get-off that crippled him but probably saved his life.

I should also mention that both riders were veterans of Mojave and were 200 mph club members."
[/u]

Also, to correct an earlier poster, at Mojave only one car has gone off the runway at our events, a NASCAR who realized his mistake and skidded through the dirt unharmed, but stopped before the fence and wrecked the bottom of his car.

Underlining mine.

Certainly the "Head down" riding position triggers a
LOT of discussion; both in favor and opposed.

In favor is that it reduces air resistance and alloys higher speeds.
Opposing of course is that the rider cannot (directly) see where he is going.

Dave Owen practiced the "Head down" style in a wind tunnel,
and convinced himself that it was worth it.

My research show some version of this technique AT LEAST
as far back as the 1930's - almost 100 years.

Is it "unsafe ?"

Well, "safe" and "unsafe" is hard to discuss. 
"More safe" and "less safe" discussions are more productive.

For swimming, to avoid the "danger" of drowning,
don't go near the water.
Eliminate swimming altogether; that's "safe."
Eliminate fishing or riding in boats, since that presents
a chance to be in the water and drowning.(NOT safe)

Or, you could learn about water safety, and learn to swim................

A continuum of very safe to very unsafe.............

For pavement LSR

Offline scott g

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #312 on: June 23, 2018, 10:08:38 AM »
Just for a little more emphasis:

"...The fact that the last two riders who have gone off did this is not in dispute; we watched them from the finish line until they went off, as we do for all racers.  Neither one of them ever looked up until it was too late.  The 2016 rider realized his mistake about 100' from the end of the runway and attempted a get-off that crippled him but probably saved his life.I should also mention that both riders were veterans of Mojave and were 200 mph club members..."

06 brought the concept of "Best Practices."

In the above case, IF riding head down is bad practice,
than what we see is a Bad Practice,
that of having the first rider - reported as head down - allowed
to race that way in the first place in 2016 - two years ago.

"BADDER practice" would be allowing rider #2 to REPEAT
 #1's riding posture, and this time die.

Best practice, first of all, would be certainly
to STOP  doing bad practices  !
[/b][/size]

Offline scott g

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #313 on: June 23, 2018, 10:18:57 AM »
Scott,...
Without a proper accident investigation following a crash it's hard to implement change.  Maybe we should make a list of risky actions or situations and work from that to develop some sort of recommendation or standard..."

??

There we are !

Find the cause (Do an accident reconstruction)

Make the change ( Institute Best Practices)

Doesn't seem that hard, does it..................

In the 2016 crash at Mojave mentioned above,
I NEVER saw ANY accident investigations, NEVER
found out what the injury was, and NEVER saw mention
that the "head down" posture was at fault..........

How you gonna fix things if you
don't know what went wrong ?!

Offline scott g

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #314 on: June 24, 2018, 08:34:03 PM »
Although the loss of our various pavement LSR tracks
MAY be due to the number and type of racing fatalities,
we cannot be sure.  Certainly, the “landlord” might want
to name other reasons, and prevent “blowback.”  It might
 also be because insurance companies will not insure the risks.

There is, however an interesting trend.

In the ECTA, racing was uninterrupted from
1995 until the loss of the track in 2011.

The ECTA’s initial two fatalities occurred in 2008,
and were of the “run long” type, which MIGHT have
 been riders doing things they had been instructed NOT to do.

A three (3) year lapse between the fatalities and the loss of the track.

(Insurance companies can understand the loss-by-fatality. 
Riders dying when braking the associations stated rules
represents a loss the companies have NOT considering when
writing the policy and quoting the rates….)

In Ohio, racing began in 2012, and the association
almost immediately suffered it’s third “run long” fatality. 
The track lease was withdrawn rather quickly.

At the Mojave Mile, the track lease was lost
within MONTHS of their “run long” fatality.

So the delay between the fatalities and the
closing of the track decreased
 from three years, to three MONTHS.

Are the insurance companies getting “sensitized ?”

If associations could eliminate “run long” fatalities,
might we stop losing tracks ?


Online MJ Williams

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #315 on: June 25, 2018, 05:31:08 PM »
My $.02 on the "head down" position being the cause of the accidents at Mojave is that it was not the root cause of the accidents.
I knew a tiny bit about both riders that went long and the commonality between the 2 they would get tunnel vision focus and not even see what was happening more than 5 foot in front of them let alone the red flags and flashing lights beside the track.

While being head down definitely restricts you field of vision. IMHO you could have had these 2 riders sitting straight up and they would have missed the finish line warnings and probably would have only shut down when they seen the end of the track.

It is impossible to ask Tim what went wrong and Dennis still hasn't recovered memories from 2 weeks before the crash and 2 weeks after. 

Focus is like gravity, most of the time its your friend but when it isn't, stuff goes bad quickly.
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Offline Landspeed Larry

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #316 on: June 29, 2018, 07:11:56 AM »
Here is a post from a Kawasaki site about running at Mojave this Spring. The first I have seen where the actual cause is mentioned. This was on a ZX-14R   LSL

Got one run in , lost my perspective at the mile marker and shut down . I had no idea how far down the track I was and to be safe, I just got out of it..I actually went thru the trap at 86 mph
 While in staging lanes for 2nd run , motorcycle on the course never got off the throttle. He went off the end of the runway at 200 plus. He was dead before they ever got to him.. the track shut down for the rest of the day so I loaded up and came home. We will probably never know why he stayed on the throttle but my guess is disoriented. If I glanced away from downtrack for even an instant at speed, it took a lot of effort to pinpoint where I was on the track..
Mojave Mile has shut down for good. I have been twice, and both times, riders have ran into the desert at full speed
. The first one lived.but it was real close..
.
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Offline Frank06

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #317 on: July 16, 2018, 07:37:49 AM »
FWIW, here's a crappy cropped pic of the shutdown area at Loring.  There are four multi-colored flags on each side at the mile and six black and white checkered flats on each side at the 1.5 mile, with two sets of flashing strobes on each side at the 1.5 mile.  The only vehicle which went long was a streamliner whose chute failed to deploy.  His front wheels were just off the high abrasion asphalt at the extreme end of the runway (which is about 1000' past regular long shutdown turn off). 

[/url]Loring Shutdown-small by Frank[url=https://flic.kr/p/26rmMTu]Loring Shutdown-small by Frank, on Flickr[/img]
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Offline Frank06

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #318 on: July 16, 2018, 07:40:57 AM »
The flags and their mounts are all PVC, attached to pieces of plywood screwed into the runway.  They are 200' apart (runway is 300' wide).
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Offline scott g

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #319 on: July 16, 2018, 03:39:20 PM »
Here is a post from a Kawasaki site about running at Mojave this Spring. The first I have seen where the actual cause is mentioned. This was on a ZX-14R   LSL

Got one run in , lost my perspective at the mile marker and shut down . I had no idea how far down the track I was and to be safe, I just got out of it..I actually went thru the trap at 86 mph
 While in staging lanes for 2nd run , motorcycle on the course never got off the throttle. He went off the end of the runway at 200 plus. He was dead before they ever got to him.. the track shut down for the rest of the day so I loaded up and came home. We will probably never know why he stayed on the throttle but my guess is disoriented. If I glanced away from downtrack for even an instant at speed, it took a lot of effort to pinpoint where I was on the track..
Mojave Mile has shut down for good. I have been twice, and both times, riders have ran into the desert at full speed
. The first one lived.but it was real close..
.

Thanks for finding that quotation Larry.

This discussion is all the more poignant with it being
the 5th anniversary of Bill Warner's passing. 

On the bright side, Ralph Hudson posted a 308mph
entry speed in Bolivia almost 5 years to the day of Bill's Anniversary. 

Honor to both of them.

I have researched the history of the "head down" riding style. 
There are references and photo's all the way back to the
board-track era, which in this case is before WWI - so about 100 years.

I think we CANNOT make the case that it is MORE safe
to ride head down, but the real question is: Is it too UNSAFE ?

That will involve some investigation of what it is about the
"head-down" position that is behind the "run long" problem.......

The eye witness quote Larry offers is insightful: 
The end of the track was seen by most folks,
who had no obvious problem stopping appropriately.

The deceased rider did NOT decelerate appropriately -
and maybe not at all, if the eye witness is correct.

I suspect there is a case to be made that VISION problems
 are not the problem.  It may be something else,
like a "brain failure" of some kind.

100 years of investigation of men in combat shows that
many fighters NEVER fired their weapons.  Some of those
reasons involved the soldier "freezing" in place;
incapable of any action whatsoever.

Is that happening in LSR ?

Certainly going down-track at over 200 mph offers
deadly peril - just like wartime for soldiers.

Do these riders have eyes that see,
and brains that comprehend,
and bodies that  fail to act ?

Online MJ Williams

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #320 on: July 19, 2018, 03:45:05 PM »
Do these riders have eyes that see,
and brains that comprehend,
and bodies that  fail to act ?

Interesting point that I have not considered. You wonder about pilots that have pancaked into the ground. When you want to honor them you say "he was doing everything he could but run out of space". If you want to speak unkindly you say "he froze up and drove into the ground". 
There is probably razor width thickness truth between the two.
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Online FlaminRoo

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Re: Fatalities in LSR
« Reply #321 on: July 20, 2018, 06:51:27 AM »
"I think we CANNOT make the case that it is MORE safe to ride head down, but the real question is : Is it too UNSAFE?"

@ 50mph you cover 73'/second, width of average intersection in the suburbs,,
@ 70 = 117'/sec,,
@ 100 = 147'/sec,,
@ 150 = 220'/sec,,
@ 200 = 293'/sec,,
@ 250 = 367'/second,  more than the length of a football field,,

From a previous reply :- "If I glanced away from down track for even an instant at speed, it took an effort to pinpoint where I was on track"

If it was "SAFE" to ride with head down, we would "NOT" be asking the question  :?
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