Motorcycle Safety Tips To keep You Alive!
Updated: Nov 16, 2019
Driving a motorcycle while feeling the wind on your face is a liberating experience. Bikes are more than a vehicle, riding is fun, motorcycles are fuel efficient and the best option to move in crowded cities with hellish traffic. However, we all know that riding a bike is much more dangerous than driving a car. In fact, the statistics say that there is a 30% more chance of dying in a motorcycle accident than in a car. The number go higher when the rider is older because riders over 60 years have weaker eyesight, slower reflexes, and weaker bones.
However, there are hundreds of people who enjoy a life riding a motorcycle without a single accident. The only difference lies in the security measures that are taken in order to avoid risks and prevent accidents. If you are new to this world of motorcycles, it is essential to create safety habits that will guarantee your physical integrity while you enjoy your ride. Keep reading.
- Choose the right bike: if you are a rookie, do not choose the biggest motorcycle that could be difficult to maneuver. Find one that suits your body so that you can reach the pedals entirely and that you can drive comfortably. Choose small models (250 to 300 cc) to start, and then you can upgrade your ride when you get more experience on the road.
- Learn how to drive a bike: no, driving a motorcycle isn't the same as driving a car. You'll need appropriate training and refine your skills by practicing. Before hitting the road, it's better to take a couple of lessons to learn the basics, techniques and some emergency maneuvers. Practice your new skills in a safe place, read and learn as much as you can. Your safety depends on yourself.
- Helmet is NOT optional: not wearing a helmet increases by 40% the possibility of dying in a crash, even in small accidents. The best option is to choose a full-face helmet, approved by the DOT. Don't worry, helmets are light, comfortable and are made to protect you from noise, sun, and wind.
- Use appropriate gear: you'll need clothes that protect you from the cold, bugs and external elements. Remember that you are completely exposed to the environment, so wearing the right clothes can prevent scratches and bumps in case of a fall. A padding jacket, thick cloth pants, and boots, as well as gloves, will be enough. Don't worry about the weather; there is gear made with ventilation and breathable material appropriate for the warmer climate.
- Drive defensively: statistics show that most motorcycle accidents occur because of the driver of the car in 60% of cases. If you drive a motorcycle, you should be alert to the vehicles around you and try to anticipate any risky situation.
- Keep a safe distance from the cars around you. Don't tailgate; you'll need enough space to maneuver and react. Never try to pass between two vehicles, not even by the right lane.
- Avoid wet roads: bad weather is the biggest enemy for bike riders. Slippery roads are dangerous, as it reduces your margin for error, reduces the tires' grip on the pavement and transforms a normal and safe road in a guillotine. Be especially careful when the rain starts, as this first drop makes the residual oil on the road to rising. Don't brake or steer too hard, be gentle and look for shelter. It's better to stop and wait.
- Learn and make a habit of using your lights. Use them properly to alert other drivers about your next maneuver. Don't make unexpected turns or movements.
- Bike is not a car: it's made to transport just two people, not three people and a mattress. Read the manual, you shouldn't put too much weight on your bike. Also, talk to your partner, they should know how to ride: sitting with their feet on the supports, leaning a little on turns and holding the bike, not the driver.
- Don't skip maintenance: your bike is a delicate instrument that needs the right care and support. Before each ride, check lights, horn, belt, shaft, and brakes. Inspect the tires, check if they have the proper pressure. Deflated tires make steering hard and will have problems leaning on turns, making you prone to falls.
- Be awake and sober: driving sober and well-rested reduces the chances of being in an accident. Being under the influence of alcohol or drugs impairs your ability to react. Also, being sleepy, stressed, angry or under emotional stress can have the same effects.