Riding Tip: Intersection Management Video Part 4

February 8, 2019 Tags: , ,

In this video RiderCoach Jill explains several different scenarios when stopping at an intersection. Her tips will help you minimize interaction with other vehicles at one of the most dangerous places on the road for motorcyclists: INTERSECTIONS
What position do you want to be in when stopping at an intersection?

Coming up, in this fourth and final segment about intersection management, we’ll highlight key positions used by riders to avoid kissing pavement while stopped at an intersection.

From our Phoenix Crash Study video, we learned 39% of motorcycle collisions involving another vehicle occurred when a rider strikes a car from behind.

In urban areas, it is crucial to give ourselves plenty of stopping distance. This brings us to our first strategy:
Stop far enough behind and to the side of the vehicle in front of you to allow for escape paths.

It is a terrible feeling to hear tires screeching behind you while stopped at an intersection.

It is even more terrible when you realize you have no escape paths available.

The next element comes into play when stopping in general. You’ll probably want to avoid the center of the lane. We call that Lane Position 2. That’s where contaminants tend to collect. Here again, by using lane position 1 or 3, we allow ourselves natural escape paths.

Finally, when it comes to turning left at lights, we need to consider two situations: single and double turn lanes.

For single turn lanes, we recommend position three. This is because cars turning left have a tendency to cut the corner leaving us exposed. Plus, now we are setup for outside-inside-outside path of travel for our turn.

For double turn lanes, we want to utilize the inner most lane and choose lane position three. We want to avoid the outside turn lane as cars tend to drift wide when turning left.

Unless we are turning right in a short distance, we want to avoid the outside turn lane.

Keeping these simple strategies in mind, we think you’ll have less stress and less interaction with cars at intersections.

Thank you for watching. If you liked this video, please give it a thumbs up and place a comment below. If you want more, make sure to subscribe to our channel.

Be safe and have fun everyone.

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Bill Seltzer Yamaha FJ-09Bill Seltzer has been a Motorcycle Safety Foundation RiderCoach since 2003 and a Total Control Advanced Riding Instructor since 2011.  He currently serves as the Marketing Director for TEAM Arizona and is a member of the Arizona Strategic Highway Safety Planning committee.  Have questions or comments about the article?  Email him: Bill@MotorcycleTraining.com


  1. Mitch 1 year Reply

    Great tips! Knowledge from experienced riders is so valuable.

    • Thanks for watching Mitch! If you have any recommendations about video content, please let us know what you may be interested in learning.

  2. Charles 1 year Reply

    Spot on Team AZ! Thanks!

    I would add one tip – never be the first vehicle through an intersection. I DON’T TIME LIGHTS!!!
    When I’m stopped at a red light, say a three lane road going straight. I like to be in position 1 or 3 in the middle lane. When the light turns green, I let the cars on my left and right go first, so that if a red light runner invades the intersection on us, I’m not t-boned first (from either side).

    I’d rather take the impact from a car being hit and then sliding into me sideways, after it’s absorbed some of the red light runner’s energy. Being last into the intersection means I have coverage by the first vehicles, which are also more visible.


  3. Thomas 12 months Reply

    Lane splitting (or filtering) is probably not a beginner’s topic, but it is noteworthy to be aware of potential collisions with cagers (cars/trucks) who dont stop in time at intersections. Again as previously noted, have an escape path when coming to a stop amongst cars. I’ve also started to place myself between vehicles to reduce the chances of being hit from behind. We in California get alway with this, but check in your state for the legality of lane splitting.

    • Bill Seltzer 12 months Reply

      Yeah, in Arizona lane splitting or filtering (two different activities) are not permitted by the Arizona Revised Statutes. We would like to see filtering become available to help reduce rear end collisions. With regards to lane splitting, we are awaiting more information from Cal Berkeley to make our decision.