What do we carry in our pockets while riding? I recently had a good think about that, brought about due to a post on the Shadow Riders Australia Forums that was a direct result of one of my comments on there. What did I say? .... Quote:- " I'm going to get a fender rack and bags eventually but till the finances stretched for that I was thinking a tank bag would be sufficient for carrying round my important stuff that doesn't fit in my pockets."
And what was the post that it triggered? ... Carrying "stuff" while riding.
It really made me think. If you don't feel like going over there and reading the post, here's a bit of a summary ... basically the bloke was trying to point out the dangers of carrying 'stuff' in your pockets while riding. His observations were that in the case of an accident the things that are on your person become 'a potential source of major injury'. He described accidents where fractured ribs have been in the shape of the mobile phone that was in a pocket and a punctured thigh was caused by house keys (fortunately missing the femoral artery). These were sobering thoughts for me.
If I'm just heading down to the local cafe for lunch then I often carry house keys, hard cigarette case, lighter and mobile phone as well as a credit card purse, in my jacket pockets. Oh yeah he also mentioned how if you hit a lighter with enough force it will blow up .. yep add burns to fractures and punctures.
I responded that I'd thought long and hard and now everything I want to carry will be going into my tank bag, even if I hadn't already bought one I would now be convinced that I needed one and have ordered it straight away. But I thought that I'd still want to carry my phone on me, my reasoning being that if I had an accident then I'd like the phone to be handy to me so that I could call for help. I did say that I was happy if anyone could tell me why I shouldn't carry my phone in my pocket.
Yep he had an answer for that too, and one I've taken on board. If you come off your bike the chances that your mobile phone will be rendered useless if it's in your pocket are increased, if it's in a bag on the bike then it's more likely to still be working, all ya gotta do is manage to crawl to it then you can call for help if you need to. Makes sense to me and I've already found the perfect pocket for my phone in my tank bag.
I've taken it all on board, the thought that the little things that I've been happily carrying round in my pockets may in fact be weapons that will cause more damage to me if the worst happens has been very sobering to me. As always I'm ready to take any advice from others about safety while riding, and my next ride will have everything in the tank bag, the only thing I'm keeping in my jackets is the armour.
Now all I need to do is get out on the bike, it's been a long weekend here and the roads are too dangerous at the moment, there have been quite a few fatal accidents in the last week. That just scares me, so here's hoping next weekend will have perfect weather for a good ride. Til then I'm going to endeavour to get the bike out to take to work .... as long as it's not too cold we had a lovely fog Saturday morning!
Oh and I worked out what was wrong with my blinkers, it's the switch sticking, I sprayed a bit of WD40 in it and it's now working like a charm again, yay I fixed a thing all by myself !! (Well Terry was there handing me tools ... oh well he did mention some stuff that helped, he told me where the screw was so I could check the bulb on the front blinker, even though that wasn't the problem it helped to narrow it down :-)