A driver pulls up to a stop sign and looks both ways. He does not see any traffic on the cross street, so he pulls out into the road.
And right into the path of a motorcycle. The bike slams into the side of the car. The rider sails over the hood and lands on the pavement, rolling to a stop.
The driver gets out, horrified. To anyone watching, it appears that he just didn't look for the bike, but he knows that he did. He simply didn't see it when he looked. How could this have happened?
The answer lies in the way that the eye works. It's not like the video camera on your phone, which captures everything. The eye pieces the world together as it observes it. It takes time for the things that it sees to actually register. Often, people see what they expect to see, or they overlook things that are small and moving quickly.
That's why motorcyclists face serious risks. People often do not expect to see motorcycles since they're so used to looking for cars. The bikes are also far smaller than cars, and they move relatively quickly, even when the rider is not breaking the speed limit. In some cases, all of these things work together to make it so that a driver can glance right at a motorcycle without actually seeing the bike until it is too late.
Have you been hit while riding your motorcycle? If so, make sure you know what legal options you have to seek compensation for medical bills and other costs.