Your motorcycle can be fun. And practical. And deadly. Statistically, there will be more than 5,000 fatal motorcycle crashes annually. The data indicates that motorcycle riders are almost 30 times more likely to die in a crash than people riding in cars. It’s a sobering statistic which gives you cause to pause. However, there are certain things you can do to minimize the chances of accidents or fatality when you ride your bike. Motorcycle safety doesn’t happen by accident.
Five Great Motorcycle Safety Pointers:
In the interests of motorcycle safety, here are a few pointers that will help make your ride smooth, comfortable, and more survivable when you ride.
1. Always Drive Defensively.
Assume that the other person doesn’t see you and be prepared to take evasive action. Refrain from weaving or driving between cars in congested traffic, even if you see a clear path to get ahead in standstill traffic. One of the benefits of motorcycles is maneuverability but resist the temptation to “create your own lane” between vehicles in a traffic jam. Not only is it illegal, but it’s also exceptionally dangerous. Likewise, be on the lookout for road hazards like open road joints, tire debris, potholes, etc. Defensive driving is an exercise in preparedness. And it’s key to motorcycle safety.
2. Don’t Drive More Bike than You Can Handle.
If you’re new to riding, start with a lighter motorcycle that’s easier to handle. The last thing you want to do is drop your bike. As you gain experience in managing weight and balance, power control, etc., you’ll naturally progress up through heavier series of motorcycles. But if you’re too ambitions when you begin, riding your motorcycle will be more stressful and difficult than liberating. Explore your options and ride the best bike for your skill level and experience.
3. Minimize and Avoid Distractions.
Just as it’s unsafe (and illegal) to text while driving a car, texting while riding a motorcycle is even more dangerous. But texting-while-driving is not the only form of distracted driving. Looking down at a GPS is just as hazardous, as is trying to figure out your bike’s switches while on the road. If you need to get directions or are unfamiliar with your new bike’s controls, pull over to a safe spot before diverting your attention from the road. Likewise, it can be very distracting to carry a rider with you, especially if you’re new to riding, yourself. Anything that steals your attention from traffic and the road is potentially a hazard to your motorcycle safety.
4. Dress for the Occasion.
Although riding with the wind in your hair is the feeling of freedom, riding without a helmet is courting disaster. Think “helmet”. And think “leather”. Equip yourself with the right attire for your ride, such as leather jacket, pants, boots, and gloves. Accidents happen, and the best way to avoid serious injury or death in a motorcycle accident is to protect your body. You’re riding without seatbelts and airbags. If you have a collision with another vehicle or drop your bike on loose gravel, your body becomes a missile. You’re going to get a case of road rash, most likely, if it happens. But minimize the extent of your injuries and chance of death by wearing proper motorcycle safety gear.
5. Keep Your Bike Properly Maintained.
Part of motorcycle safety is keeping your motorcycle well-maintained for top performance. There will be times when you need a burst of power. There will be other times when you need to brake hard. And in the case of rough roads, dusty conditions, etc., you’ll find that your bike (and you) gets a workout while navigating the road. Using the right fork oil, engine oil, and so forth are key to a smooth-running motorcycle. Minimize the wear and tear. Stay on top of oil changes and preventive maintenance. For that, use AMSOIL synthetics to maximize power and performance for your ride. There’s no substitute for the best. AMSOIL V-Twin and metric motorcycle oils are formulated to protect your equipment for the long-term. BuyGreatOil.com is happy to assist you with finding the right product for your bike.
Take heed of the above five motorcycle safety tips. You’ll find that a safer ride is a more pleasurable, less stressful ride. You will still enjoy the freedom that motorcycling offers. Moreover, you’ll live to ride again by staying out of harm’s way and being better prepared to meet the extent of the “occasional emergency”, if one befalls you.