When it comes to rain and motorcycles, some avoid it completely, while others take a strategic approach to riding. While it’s not impossible, rain and its accompanying conditions, like slick roads, poor visibility and wind, add more variables to your ride, making for a far more difficult drive.
Generally, bikers can safely go for a ride in the rain, although lightning and strong winds should be avoided. As you head out, make sure to consider these tips.
1. Dress Appropriately
Your regular jacket and pants aren’t enough; beyond a minor drizzle, water will seep through your clothing, making you wet and cold in the process. Instead, have proper rain gear to wear. More specifically, attire that’s both waterproof, breathable and, ideally, high visibility. GORE-TEX is recommended as a fabric, but also make sure you have:
- Rain suit, with a one- or two-piece design
- A full helmet to keep the wind out
Along with these basics, also consider a helmet with a face shield, anti-fog visor and Rain-X to improve visibility on your journey. Should you be heading out into colder conditions, include a thin layer or two under your rain gear for extra warmth.
2. Check Your Tires
The combination of oil and water on the pavement makes the ground slicker than usual. In response, any biker heading out into the rain needs to make sure the tires on his ride have enough grip. Anything too smooth puts you at risk for sliding, spinning out or getting into an accident.
3. Watch Where You Drive
Some areas are slicker than others and, as you ride, be alert to the following:
- White lines and manhole covers become extra slippery in the rain
- Any oil residue
- Intersections: Always reduce your speed and never run a yellow light
- Never brake quickly and sharply in slick conditions
- Give other drivers enough space
- Railroad crossings: Always go over them in a straight pattern, as the metal surface is extremely slippery
When it comes to braking in the rain, it’s never a good idea to do it strongly, as there’s potential to hydroplane. Instead, pump them and focus more on your rear brakes, as these are easier to correct if you start sliding.
4. Never Ride in Lightning
If you see lightning during your journey, get off the road immediately and head for cover. From there, wait until it passes fully before you start riding again.
Motorcycles are particularly vulnerable on the road, which makes collisions and other accidents far more serious. If you’ve been in this situation and now need legal representation, turn to Trantolo & Trantolo’s team of motorcycle lawyers. Not only do we represent these types of cases, but many members of our team ride and are familiar with the technicalities of operating a motorcycle. To speak with a lawyer about your claim, contact any of our locations today.