pr odu ct s Kriega r35
Carry More Stuff A backpack is often the most convenient way to take stuff along on your bike. But regular backpacks aren’t designed for the riding position. Kriega’s packs are. Kriega’s R35, for example, uses the company’s innovative harness system, which transfers the load to the hips and chest, not the shoulders. The result is more freedom for arm movement, and less neck strain. It’s also weather-resistant, offers 35 liters of capacity and has a 10year guarantee. MSRP: $195. More info: Kriega.us
Ask the MSF
Photo MSF: Tom Bear Photography
What’s a safe folloWing Distance? You Ask: “I’ve been taught to leave a 2-second gap between me and the car in front of me, and I’ve even heard of longer recommended gaps. The problem is that in most in-town trafﬁc situations if I leave a gap that large someone will pull into it. What’s the recommended procedure here? Just keep dropping back and back while people pull in front of me?” The MSF Responds: A safe following distance helps ensure that you won’t rearend a car that stops suddenly, and won’t hit a road hazard (pothole, debris) that you spot after the car in front of you passes over it. Following distance must account for the three components of stopping distance: • Perception distance: how soon you’re able to notice a hazard in your path. • Reaction distance: how quickly you can decide to take evasive action. • Braking distance: how skillfully you apply the brakes. The MSF recommends a minimum 2-second following distance in most riding conditions. Some trafﬁc safety organizations are now recommending 3 seconds (or more) because vehicle operators tend to be more distracted these days. But, as you mention, too great a following distance may lead to people pulling into the gap, forcing you to decelerate. It also might lead to riders being lulled into a false sense of security
because they feel they’re no longer within striking distance of another vehicle. Therefore, the following distance you choose must balance the need for adequate spacing so you can react to a hazardous condition and the need to protect your space. The more you employ a good street strategy (Search/Evaluate/ Execute, keeping escape routes in mind, covering the brakes when in heavy trafﬁc, etc.), the less you’ll need to rely on your good maneuvering skills to extract yourself from a dangerous situation.
The Journal of the AMA Preview Version