So, you’ve tuned up your ride and are planning to go for a drive. Spring might be the perfect season for taking out the motorcycle, but even with snow off the ground, the roads still pose a few significant hazards.
Other motorists should be alert to motorcycle riders, but bikers have a duty, too, to remain safe and aware. Keep the following points in mind:
Practice Defensive Driving
Several factors, most related to the weather, require you to be fully aware of your surroundings:
- Unpredictable weather, including rain and hail.
- Slick roads, which could cause you to hydroplane and lose control.
- Pot holes and cracks, which could damage your front-end suspension.
- Debris and gravel.
If you don’t pay attention and slow down, all of the above factors could result in an accident and injuries. As you ride, always give yourself enough distance between yourself and the cars in front and behind. Slamming on your brakes or quickly swerving around could further cause you to skid or slip. As a general rule, know what conditions lie five to 12 seconds ahead and be ready to respond.
Make sure other motorists can see you – day or night and in whichever conditions you travel. To do this, keep your headlights on at night and in dark conditions, wear light-colored or reflective clothing, and use your turn signals.
As well, when driving in areas with other motorists, never find yourself in a blind spot. Doing this results in the driver not seeing you; at a left turn, especially if you choose to drive in a straight line, a collision may occur as a result.
Have the Right Gear
Your gear, especially your helmet, increases your chances of survival in the event of an accident.
But your gear needs to be in good condition and has to fit well. A helmet must be snug and free of cracks and dents. Additionally, check your jacket, gloves, and boots to ensure all are neither too loose nor too tight, and that they’re strong and sturdy enough for the road.
Get a Tune Up and Reassess Your Skills
How ready are you for the road? Check two aspects before you go on a journey: one, your bike must be tuned up, cleaned, and running properly, while your own skills should be up to snuff.
For the former, if you can’t do the work yourself, have a professional assess your ride before you take it out for a few hours on the road. As far as your own skills are concerned, some recommend even reviewing with a motorcycle training course.
Trantolo & Trantolo’s not just a law firm representing bikers – our team rides, too. Because of this experience, our lawyers understand the hazards of the road facing motorcyclists. If you find yourself in an accident, as this can happen even to the best bikers, turn to our team for legal representation.