Motorcycles are fun to drive and fuel efficient, but anyone who drives one understands the risks they’re taking each time they go for a ride. In fact, about 80 percent of motorcycle crashes result in an injury or death for the motorcyclist. The simple reason for this is that there is very little protection for motorcyclists. Outside of special clothing and a helmet, there isn’t a barrier between the motorcyclist and the other vehicle involved. Being thrown from the motorcycle is almost a guarantee for most accidents and this significantly increases the risk for injury.
Every motorcyclist should keep the following safety tips in mind at all times:
- Wear the Right Gear – A helmet is by far the most important safety equipment for motorcyclists. Other gear that should be worn when riding includes a jacket, face shield, boots, gloves, and goggles.
- Use Your Best Judgment – Before purchasing a motorcycle you need to know your limits. Don’t buy a bike that has too much power and is difficult to control. And always ride at a pace and in traffic that makes you feel comfortable.
- Attend a Training Course – Regardless of your riding experience, it never hurts to hone your skills. There are motorcycle safety courses available for riders of all levels.
- Keep Your Distance – Too many motorcyclists don’t allow enough space between them and the vehicle in front of them. Tailgating will significantly increase your risk of being in an accident.
- Be Defensive – As the smallest vehicle on the road, it is a big responsibility to look out for other drivers. Do your best to avoid a vehicle’s blind spot and only change lanes when necessary. It’s also important to use turn signals well in advance because it’s a great way to communicate your intentions with other vehicles on the road.
- Avoid Bad Weather – Motorcyclists should do their best to not drive during rainy weather. You should always check the day’s forecast before riding a motorcycle.
- Limit Distractions – Motorcyclists should avoid using their phone or eating while driving at all times as it is crucial to keep both hands on the handlebars.
Motorcycle accidents are a common occurrence, but keeping these safety tips in mind should help reduce your risk of being involved in an accident.
by Scott Distasio