May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month! According to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) study, motorcyclists are about 35 times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash per mile traveled and 8 times more likely to be injured in an accident.
Defensive riding habits help you maintain control and get to your destination safely. If you’re a motorist on two wheels, keep these tips in mind for Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month.
1. Maintain Your Bike
Overlooking motorcycle maintenance can put riders at greater risk of an accident. Regularly check the fuel and fluid levels, brakes, tire pressure, headlights and taillights. If you notice any warning signs of significant wear and tear, have your bike professionally inspected.
2. Practice Caution
According to the NHTSA, approximately 42 percent of motorcycle accidents are caused by drivers making left-hand turns without seeing the bike approach. Before you proceed at an intersection, make eye contact with other motorists to ensure they’ve seen your bike.
As you ride alongside other cars and trucks, watch for the head movements of other motorists. A glance over the shoulder could mean a driver is about to move in front of your motorcycle.
3. Keep Your Eyes Peeled
While riding, keep your head on a swivel at all times. Pay attention to all traffic signs and signals, as well as the actions of other drivers. Look both ways before entering traffic and drive with caution. If you’re entering a multi-lane road, be mindful of drivers who may be changing lanes. Also take care passing other vehicles and maintain a safe following distance.
4. Make Yourself Visible
Unfortunately, not all drivers are looking out for your motorcycle. Wear bright colored clothing and consider reflective tape and other bike accessories to help you be seen. Even if your bike has signal lights, use hand signals so other drivers can anticipate your movements.
Lastly, avoid riding in another motorist’s blind spot. Position your bike to the left or right of the bumper in front of you, so your motorcycle is visible in their rear and side mirrors.
Trantolo & Trantolo has proudly served the local motorcycle community for over 80 years! After an accident, our attorneys will fight for the justice you deserve for injuries and bike damage. To pursue a claim, contact us today.