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Motorcycle Safety Tips for on the Road

When we discuss motorcycle safety, we are talking about not only the operator skill and training but also aspects of the vehicle and equipment design as well. In 2013 alone, two-wheeled motorcycles accounted for approximately 93 percent of all motorcycles involved in fatal crashes. Also, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Association, motorcyclists also accounted for 14 percent of traffic fatalities.

Most Common Cause of Motorcycle Accidents

One of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents is actually when cars are making left-hand turns. It has nothing to do with the motorcyclist themselves. The car making the turn is usually responsible for these kinds of accidents simply because they are not paying attention when the motorcycle is driving through the intersection.

Most of the vehicles on the roadway are trucks, cars, and vans. Many drivers of these vehicles have a hard time when it comes to seeing motorcycles, and they often don’t yield the right of way to the motorcyclist as they should.

This is largely due to the smaller size of motorcycles when compared to the other vehicles, the failure for a driver to anticipate a motorcycles movements, and the obstructed view of the driver because the motorcycle is in their blind spot. Distracted driving is also another big reason drivers often neglect seeing motorcycles on the road.

Motorcycle Safety

As a motorcycle operator, there are things you can do to help ensure your own safety as you continue to share the roadway with these other vehicles.

Wear the Right Gear

First, you should make sure to wear the right gear while riding. A full coverage helmet is the first line of defense you have if you are involved in an accident. Make sure the helmet you purchase is sporting the DOT sticker that guarantees that the helmet meets the safety standards that are required by law.

Safety Course

If you are a new driver, you should make sure to attend a motorcycle safety course. This is also a good idea even if you are a more experienced rider. You should also familiarize yourself with the rules of the road and drive defensively. Pay close attention at intersections because this is where the majority of the accidents typically take place.

Don’t Speed

Additionally, don’t speed, watch for hazards, and assume that you are invisible to the other motorists. Anticipate that you are forever trapped in their blind spot. You should get into the habit of positioning yourself so that you can be better seen and avoid weaving in and out of lanes.

After a Crash

Even if you follow all the rules and safety tips as we have outlined, there is still a chance you can be involved in an accident. If this happens, you should stay calm and follow a few steps after the accident.

Step One: Check for injuries and get yourself to a safe area. Don’t stay in the roadway if you are able to move off the road. You want to immediately get out of the way of traffic to avoid putting yourself into any more danger.

Step Two: Check the others involved in the accident for injuries and call 911 if anyone is hurt. Most of the time a motorcyclist will incur some type of injury including fractures or other injuries to the lower and upper extremities.

Step Three: Remain calm and do not get into any type of altercation with anyone else involved in the accident. Wait for the police to arrive and refrain from saying or doing anything that could potentially make the situation worse.

Step Four: Report the accident to law enforcement and your insurance company. Provide a detailed description of what happened and include photographs if possible of the motorcycle, the vehicles involved, and even the surroundings. Also, obtain all the information you need including the other driver’s information.

If you find that you are having difficulty with any of the above steps and wish to discuss your case with an accident attorney, then it may be in your best interest to do so.