May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, and here at Law Tigers, we appreciate the opportunity to revisit some important motorcycle safety tips. To be fair, safe riding is an ongoing focus of ours, and any time we get the opportunity to educate others about how to minimize an accident, it makes the whole motorcycle riding community safer.
Important motorcycle safety tips
Here are some of the most useful tips on how to stay safe while out on the road:
Always wear a helmet
It’s the 21st century – no one is too cool to protect their head and neck. We recommend wearing a full-face helmet that meets the Department of Transportation standards. These designs have been proven to reduce both neck and traumatic brain injuries by over 65 percent. Besides, you can custom print anything you want on them these days to show off your personal style!
Check out the helmet laws in your state here!
You heard us. ATGATT stands for ‘All The Gear All The Time’, and it is one of the best ways to make sure your riding career is a long one. Pants, gloves, boots, and jackets that are specifically designed for motorcycle riding will not shred if you skid along the ground, while most other materials will. That should be enough to convince you.
Do a pre-trip check on your motorcycle
We like to use another acronym (TCLOCS) to help us remember what to check on our bike before hitting the open road:
- Tires and Wheels
- Lights and Electrical
- Oils and other fluids
Additionally, make sure that if you are riding a bike you aren’t familiar with, that you get comfortable with the height, weight, and body structure of the motorcycle before you start riding it in a live traffic scenario.
If you follow proper safety training and riding rules, it is more likely that your greatest source of danger will be other motor vehicles. With this in mind, always be on the lookout for how traffic is moving, and plan for unpredictable moves. For example, while at an intersection, if a vehicle is moving towards you, you might have to consider how to exit without harming you or any other motorists. Similarly, make sure that you keep a safe two-second or more distance between yourself and any other cars to avoid quick-braking collisions.
Follow all laws and rules of the road
We know no one wants a lecture, but just remember these rules are here for everyone’s safety. Speeding and illegal lane changes are two of the leading causes of motorcycle crashes. Here’s a quick list of things to mind (among others):
- Don’t drink and drive.
- Don’t text and drive.
- Follow the speed limit, especially around other motorists.
- Don’t tailgate or let someone tailgate you.
- Use proper turn signals and lane change techniques
- Stay in your lane while taking corners.
Be aware of weather conditions
Another leading cause of both single and multiple-vehicle crashes is inclement weather. Make sure to check the forecast before you head out, and if there is rain or snow either avoid riding or bring appropriate gear.
Similarly, if you are out during bad conditions, adjust how you ride. Increase your distance, go a bit lighter on the breaks, and reduce your speed. Overall, you should always be aware of your surroundings, but this is especially important when the weather is bad.
Be extra cautious making left turns at intersections
The number one cause of multiple-vehicle collisions involving motorcycles is a rider turning left and being hit by a driver going straight.
Thus, when performing a left-hand turn at an intersection with multiple lanes, make sure you take your time getting out into the intersection so that both you and other drivers have time to react if they are driving out of turn. Finally, when turning or changing lanes, always check your mirrors and blind spots and use your turn signals.
The road is a better place when everyone shares it responsibly. Whether you’re riding for recreation, a commute, or going on a road trip, we all want to get to our destination in one piece. Make sure that you give yourself and other riders the best chance to get there safely.
Ride with Law Tigers by Your Side
Riding is a pastime we all enjoy. At Law Tigers, we are riders just like you. We know the freedom of hopping on our bikes and hitting the open road. We also know how devastating a crash can be for riders and their loved ones. Following these safety tips can help minimize your chances of being in an accident. However, if you or a loved one is involved in a crash, we are here to help. Our experienced attorneys* are there to fight for your rights to make sure you get the compensation you deserve after an accident. Find an attorney near you.