Ways to Stay Safe When Riding a Motorcycle
Riding a motorcycle is fun, and riders are excited by the sense of freedom this mode of transportation provides. However, motorcyclists need to understand the dangers it holds. For this reason, riders should protect themselves by performing motorcycle safety checks, ride defensively and use a helmet. Let’s look at the top eight safety tips that will let you stay safe while riding.
Make Sure You Have the Right Bike for You
Before buying a bike, it is best to check out several different sizes and power levels. Renting a motorcycle is a great way to do this. In the end, don’t buy until you are sure you feel comfortable riding the bike.
Make sure the motorcycle you ride fits you on the following levels:
- Weight: The weight of different motorcycles varies tremendously. Decide if you feel comfortable on it and whether you are able to handle the bike.
- Power: Remember the weight of the bike has a big effect on the speed. So, don’t just look at the specs, get out there and test drive the bike before choosing one.
- Power to weight alignment: When you are riding a heavy bike, the amount of power you sense will appear to be lower. That is because the power to weight ratio is affected by the heaviness of the bike. When you transition into a lighter-weight bike, the power can take you by surprise.
Get Familiar With the Motorcycle Before Heading Out
Driving a new motorcycle for the first time should be done in a controlled area. This gives you the opportunity to get used to it before taking it out into traffic. Gain some perspective about how it will handle in bad weather or on roads that may not be in the best condition.
Perform a Checklist Before Riding for Proper Motrocycle Safety
There are a few things you should do before setting out:
- Tires: Check the tire pressure, look for cracks or punctures and wear. All of these can lead to a blowout.
- Lights: Make sure to check the bike’s headlights, brake lights and turn signals.
- Leaks: Make sure there are no oil or gas leaks under the bike.
- Cargo: Ensure your cargo is balanced and secure.
- Liquid levels: Check that the coolant and hydraulic levels are good.
Motorcycle Safety Once the Engine Is Started
Before leaving, check your mirrors, horn, brakes, throttle and clutch. If a passenger is traveling with you, make sure they don’t climb aboard until the engine starts. They should always be as close to you as they can and keep their feet on the footrests and not near the muffler. Motorcycle safety focuses on passengers too.
Wear a Helmet
Purchase a certified helmet with a face shield. Riders who use a helmet are five times less likely to suffer a traumatic head injury. Make sure a passenger has one too.
Use Protective Gear for Motorcycle Safety
Ride using gear that protects your body in the event of an accident. Wear boots, gloves and heavy material such as leather or canvas. Use reflective tape when riding at night.
Follow the rules of the road. Don’t speed since this will make it harder to control your vehicle. Keep watch for cars or trucks that are turning and parked vehicles where occupants may open their door without looking. It is best to ride with your headlights on, and make sure you are not a driver’s blind spot. Look for road defects that can lead to an accident.
Wear bright-colored clothing during the day, and use reflective tape at night. It is important to make sure your bike is highly visible since most motorists say they were unaware of a motorcyclist on the road.
Never Drink and Ride
Many motorcycle accidents happen due to a motorist’s intoxication. Remember, that driving sober applies to motorcyclists as well.
Travis Law Firm – Motorcycle Safety
The Travis Law Firm fights for the rights of motorcyclists. We do not believe that they should pay the physical and financial price of another’s lack of care. Call us at (814) 277-4444 to schedule a free case review. We will examine your case, answer your questions and give you options that are available to you. We work hard to ensure that injured motorcyclists receive the compensation they deserve.