While riding your motorcycle is an exhilarating experience, it’s also an extremely dangerous one. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, motorcyclists are 28 times more likely to have a fatal accident than automobile drivers.
With these frightening statistics, taking safety seriously while riding is imperative. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of six essential tips to ensure that you drive safely.
If you’ve already been in a collision while riding your motorcycle and you’re not sure what steps to take, visit bclawoffices.com to explore your options.
1. Wear a Full-Face Helmet
It’s imperative to wear a full-face helmet with a face shield, even if you’re just going for a quick ride. Most accidents happen at slow speeds and within in a 5km radius of home – so don’t become complacent.
A full-faced helmet will protect your head, but the most common area of impact to a motorcycle helmet is the chin – so make sure it’s covered.
2. Wear Protective Gear
All that protective gear – long boots, abrasion-resistant jackets, leather pants, and gloves are not just for looking cool, they are there to protect you. Even in blistering hot summers and sweltering humidity, you should still wear them.
If the heat gets too unbearable, try a vented white helmet and lighter-colored gear. Remember, people who drive cars have a metal shield around them, but motorcyclists only have the gear they wear.
3. Check the Weather
Riding safely takes planning. Always check weather forecasts (there are weather apps specifically designed for riders) and be willing to change your plans if the conditions are less than ideal. Snow and rain can move in quickly and can make roads slick and hazardous, so always check the weather so that you can make safe decisions.
Don’t take chances – canceling a dangerous ride could save your life.
4. Stay Sober
Riding a motorcycle takes a lot of concentration – you’re using all four limbs and almost all of your senses. Safe riding requires constantly being on high alert, and it can be mentally exhausting.
It goes without saying that any kind of impairment when you’re riding a motorcycle can lead to poor judgment and very risky decisions – alcohol and lack of sleep are the worse culprits, so don’t chance it.
5. Do Pre-Ride Checks
Before every ride, check the brake lights, turn signals, tire pressure, and fluids. These basic checks take around three minutes, but they could mean all the difference when you’re on the road.
When you’re on your bike, check the suspension, adjust the mirrors, and check the clutch and brake levers. Check that they have the right amount of resistance, and if not, don’t ride.
6. Drive Defensively
Motorcyclists need to take extra precautions while driving because their narrower profile makes them harder to see to other drivers. Always be aware that other drivers may not see you and drive defensively.
Try to predict other drivers’ behavior, keep checking your mirrors, and stay alert at all times. Remember that car drivers are trained to see other cars, not motorbikes. Most automobile drivers who have collided with a motorcyclist didn’t even see them.