Do loud pipes really save lives?
It's too common to notice bikes going down the highway, but how often are they heard?  Most people believe that if a bike is heard, then it surely can be seen.  This is why one of the top upgrades on motorcycles is its exhaust system.  Motorcyclists rush out to modify their motorcycle exhaust systems with name brands such as Vans & Hines, Screaming Eagles, Cobra & Pro Circuit.  All of this work simply because they believe loud pipes save lives...Or so they say.  
TBM decided to look into the theory that loud pipes save lives to find out if there's any truth behind it.  After looking online and speaking with various riders, there wasn't any information that could give any scientific facts that would verify the theory that loud pipes save lives.  This information was baffling, so more effort went towards finding out more details.  

Evidently, the pipes on most cruisers and sport bikes aren't facing forward like the horns on most motor vehicles such as cars and emergency vehicles.  This allows the sound to project outward to be heard a little easier.  On the other hand, the pipes on most motorcycles face backwards which makes it harder to hear unless someone is close behind, especially when riding at high speeds on the highway.  

Riding in neighborhoods with loud pipes also can make a difference.  The vibrations from the pipes, along with less traffic, calls for more attention which causes people to look and see where the stem of the noise is coming from.  Loud pipes may annoy neighbors, but in the end - They can't say they didn't know a bike was  coming and going.

Overall, there is no scientific data that proves the theory of loud pipes saving lives.  It's the fact that motorcyclists truly believe they do and that's what makes them feel more comfortable and safer when riding.  That is why this topic can be debated for years to come without a clear answer.

Texas Biker Magazine would love to hear your feedback on this topic.  Do you feel loud pipes can save lives or do you feel it's an overrated theory?  When it's all said and done, the most important aspect of it all is that each rider enjoy their  ride whether or not their pipes can be heard.