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Motorcycle accidents lead to 80% of injuries or deaths and are responsible for more than 5% of total road accident fatalities. In the United States, motorcycle accidents in 2020 rose 9% from the previous year. As per the official reports revealed by National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 5,579 motorcyclists died in 2020 alone. Some common reasons for motorcycle accidents include overspeeding, lane splitting, reckless racing, distracted driving, driving under the influence, not maintaining a minimum safe distance from other vehicles, etc. Awareness of safety precautions and following them will ensure a safe motorcycle ride.
7 Vital Safety Precautions to Follow When Riding a Motorcycle
Go through the below safety precautions and tips that one must follow when riding a motorcycle to ensure overall safety.
Follow Traffic Rules
It is essential to follow traffic rules to ensure a safe ride. It is necessary to stop at red signals and ride your motorcycle within the speed limit to avoid getting into accidents. In 2018, over 10,000 people died due to overspeeding, even after following the traffic rules. Suppose you get in an accident due to the negligence of the other party; motorcycle accident lawyers can help you file a claim, obtain proper medical attention, and get maximum compensation as quickly as possible.
Invest In Motorcycle Gear
Make sure to buy and wear motorcycle gear, including a helmet, leather jacket, goggles, non-slip gloves, leather pants, ankle boots, etc. Wearing motorcycle gear will keep the rider safe from debris, dirt, and other elements. If you are riding your bike to reach a nearby location and do not wish to wear heavy-duty gear, make sure to wear a helmet since it is mandatory and keeps your head safe in case of collisions.
Keep Safe Distances
Over 50% of disastrous motorcycle accidents are those where more than two vehicles are involved in the crash. So, it is necessary to keep a minimum distance from other vehicles, which can help you dodge colliding in case of sudden movements. When the road is wet, keep a safe distance. While driving through the parked vehicle lane, ensure to leave some distance, and the ideal safety distance to maintain is 1.50 m.
Flash Headlights Before Overtaking
Before overtaking any vehicle, be sure to flash your headlights which will let the driver know that you plan to overtake. If the road visibility is less, make sure to blow the horn along with flash the headlights prior to overtaking. It is best to wear bright or reflective clothing to ensure maximum visibility.
Avoid Riding During Bad Weather
During bad weather conditions, especially in the case of rains and heavy winds, it is best to avoid riding motorcycles. Since there will be less visibility and less traction, there is a higher chance of colliding with any object or vehicle. Research reveals that about 25% of motorcycle accident deaths were because of colliding with fixed objects.
Say No to Drunk Driving
In a day, 30 people die due to drunk driving accidents, so it is best not to ride your motorcycle when drunk. In addition, drunk driving also leads to heavy fines. Also, remember not to ride when you are distracted, as 3,000 people died in 2018 alone due to distracted driving.
Watch Out at Intersections
Watch out at intersections, as over 70% of motorcycle collisions happen at road intersections. Slow down while riding at intersections and check all sides to see if any vehicles are coming up unexpectedly.
Riding a Motorcycle: Bottom Line
Motorcycle riders and passengers are at high risk of getting into road accidents, and the total fatalities prove that. Following the traffic rules, wearing a helmet and other protective gear, sticking to speed limits, following safe distances, sticking to speed lanes, and ensuring rider visibility are vital safety precautions that every motorcycle rider should know.