It’s a time of year in Arizona when many people are spending time outdoors. If you’re a motorcycle enthusiast, you’ve probably already taken a few road trips since the spring season arrived. Safety is always a primary concern when you’re riding a motorcycle. Keeping several helpful tips in mind may help you avoid motorcycle accidents.
When you’re on a motorcycle, your body is fully exposed to the elements and to the hard surface of the roadway. It’s especially important to make sure you wear clothing that is appropriate for this type of travel, such as long pants, boots, a leather jacket and a helmet. There are also several ways to reduce your chances of collision.
Take a motorcycle safety course – better yet, take more than one
No matter how skilled you are as a motorcyclist or how long you’ve been riding, there’s always a chance that an unpredictable situation might suddenly arise on the road. By enrolling in safety courses periodically, you can refresh your memory regarding appropriate actions to take when problems arise.
Don’t take unnecessary risks regarding inclement weather
Rain, snow and ice are natural hazards for motorcyclists. You’ve probably had to seek shelter under an overpass and wait out an unexpected downpour a time or two. However, you increase your risk for motorcycle accidents when you knowingly head out for a ride in inclement weather. It’s always safest to check the weather forecast ahead of time and make alternate travel arrangements, if possible, if the forecast is calling for any type of precipitation, high winds or freezing temperatures.
After inspecting the weather, inspect your vehicle
Just because your motorcycle was fit for riding last week, doesn’t mean it is today. To avoid motorcycle accidents, diligence in checking your motorcycle before each ride is one of the best safety measures you can practice. Always make sure your brakes and lights are functioning properly. It’s also wise to check tire pressure, fuel gauge, oil level, horn and handlebars.
More on proper motorcycle gear
At the start of this post, proper clothing was mentioned as a means to improve safety when you’re riding a motorcycle. Your best bet for a helmet is to wear a style that the Department of Transportation has approved for safety. You can wear several layers of clothing to adapt to weather changes, but always make sure that even the bottom layer has long sleeves and pant legs. If you wear gloves, make sure they’re a non-slip style.
Make yourself as visible as possible to other motorists
It’s not uncommon, following motorcycle accidents, for drivers of other vehicles involved to say they never saw the rider on the road. If you’ve gone through proper motorcycle license instruction, you know that there are blind spots that make you invisible to other motor vehicle drivers. To avoid motorcycle accidents regarding visibility, never assume other drivers can see you. Always assume that they don’t.
Riding with headlights on regardless the time of day is a helpful safety measure to take for visibility. Also, you can wear reflective clothing or strips on your clothing and avoid the section of the traffic lane that makes it difficult or impossible for a driver to see you in his or her mirror.
Never disregard traffic laws
Using turn signals and signals are required when you ride a motorcycle. (They also help with visibility.) Sadly, many motorcycle accidents occur because of excessive speed. Always travel the posted speed limit or less, if road conditions are poor. Come to full stops at red lights and stop signs. Approach intersections with caution and obey all Arizona driving laws, particularly those that directly pertain to motorcyclists.
If another driver hits you and you suffer injury, it’s always best to obtain medical attention, even if you believe your injuries are minor. However, minor injuries would be less common for a motorcyclist, because this type of collision often results in fatality to a rider or severe or life-threatening injuries.