Motorcycling could be your passion, a fun hobby, an efficient way to get around, or something you just want to try out, but no matter your reasons for getting on that bike, motorcycle safety is immensely important. Despite how fun and exciting riding a motorcycle can be, it can also be very dangerous. Follow these motorcycle safety tips to keep your experiences on the road positive.
Get the right gear.
Wearing the right gear on every ride could literally be a lifesaver. It isn’t just about looking the part of a biker, it’s about the safety proper motorcycle gear provides. A DOT certified helmet will protect riders from most life-threatening head injuries, and is the most important piece of gear a motorcyclist can own. The right jackets, pants, boots, and gloves can also protect from a lot of potential injuries from riding, or wrecking, a motorcycle. The Motorcycle Legal Foundation offers in-depth insight on how to choose the right gear.
Be seen by other motorists.
Motorcycles take up considerably less space on the road than other vehicles and are often less visible to other drivers. Don’t let yourself blend into the scenery or get lost in blind spots. Any driver that isn’t paying attention or doesn’t see you on the road can be a danger. Mitigate this threat by making yourself more visible through reflective or neon materials, proper signaling, and positioning yourself in the lane for greatest visibility. This tip is especially important when passing.
Keep a cushion of space and look for escape paths.
Don’t follow too close to other vehicles including other riders. Collisions are more dangerous for motorcyclists, and leaving enough room to see danger ahead and avoid it is an easy way to prevent accidents. Similarly, keep an eye out for escape paths. Know where to go if you need to quickly avoid something, and keep an eye out for danger at all times; hazards are easier to avoid if you already have a plan
Take a safety course, go to classes, and learn the laws. All riders need to understand their bike and how to safely ride it, and getting a formal education is the best way to do that. Learning how to safely operate a motorcycle will make it safer for you and everyone you share the road with.
Keep an eye on the weather.
Nothing can ruin a good ride like an unexpected storm. Poor weather conditions can be much more dangerous on a motorcycle than in other vehicles. Black ice, slick roads, poor visibility, rain, and high winds can all lead to dangerous situations that are hard to get out of, and checking a weather app is an easy way to avoid unnecessary risks. Protect yourself and others by only driving in weather conditions that you are comfortable with.