If you are a motorcyclist, one of the best ways you can help protect yourself on the road is to be aware of the dangers and risks associated with riding your motorcycle.
Motorcycle accidents often result in catastrophic and fatal injuries due to the limited protection motorcyclists have compared to drivers of motor vehicles. In 2015, 4,976 people died in collisions involving motorcycles, which is an increase of 8.3 percent, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
In fact, California has the single-highest motorcycle related accidents in the United States. Based on a report by the California’s Statewide Integrated Traffic Report System, approximately 480 motorcycle accidents resulted in deaths, while over 11,780 motorcycles were involved in collisions.
The following are 5 safety tips for a motorcyclist to avoid being victims of accidents and injuries:
- Always wear a helmet. According to the NHTSA, 37 motorcyclists would have survived a collision if they had been wearing a helmet for every 100 killed in an accident. Make sure the helmet you use fulfills the standards of the U.S. Department of Transportation and have one ready for any passengers.
- Become visible to other motorists. Accidents between motorcycles and other vehicles typically occur due to the driver not seeing the motorcyclist at all. Being visible is not just about wearing reflective clothing or a bright helmet, but ensuring that other motorists are aware of your presence.
- Understand proper riding techniques. A responsible motorcyclist needs to learn about their bike and what to expect from it, as well as know proper riding skills. Understanding your motorcycle and safe riding techniques enable you to approach curves and potholes in a proper manner, as well as brake without locking.
- Avoid road hazards. Road hazards, such as potholes or slick roads, can be more dangerous for bikers compared to vehicles. Knowing all of the possible hazards can help you learn how to handle them.
- Do not drink and ride. Almost half of all collisions involving a single motorcycle are caused by alcohol consumption. Operating a motorcycle takes balance and coordination, both of which are negatively impacted by alcohol.