If you ride a motorcycle your chances of serious injury are considerably higher than if you drive a car.
Statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), states there are more than 100,000 motorcycle accidents every year in the United States.
Riders are almost 40 times more likely than drivers to lose their lives in a wreck because they lack the external protection of a steel frame.
Notwithstanding these alarming statistics, some riders are never involved in an accident. If you are a new motorcyclist or a seasoned rider, there are some important safety tips you should take to make your ride safer.
Safety Tips for New Motorcyclists
1 Wear a Helmet
Some riders oppose laws that make motorcycle helmets mandatory. However, the figures suggest a helmet will help save your life. In Georgia, you must wear a helmet if you are on a motorcycle.
There’s considerable evidence that helmet laws save lives. According to Consumer Reports, when Texas and Arkansas repealed their helmet laws, they saw a 31 and 21 percent rise in motorcycle deaths respectively. The Department of Transportation says a full-face helmet is the best and safest choice.
2 Don’t Buy A Powerful Bike
Motorcycles have become more powerful. One of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents is riders losing control of their machines on curves or when they hit debris in the road.
Initially, you should choose a model that fits you and isn’t too powerful if you are a novice rider. If you are planning to ride a lot on the highway, you should consider a bike with a larger engine.
3 Avoid Bad Weather
Bad weather conditions like torrential rain can cause serious problems for motorists. Those problems are multiplied if you are a motorcyclist who is open to the elements.
Slippery conditions can seriously reduce your margin of error. If you need to ride in the rain, the most dangerous time is right after the rain starts. Water can cause oil residue to rise to the top creating a slick surface on the road.
4 Wear Protective Clothing
We’ve all seen motorcyclists wearing, T-shirts shorts and flip flops. This is a recipe for potential injury. Often riders suffer road rash on their legs if they crash and protective clothing can protect their legs from severe lacerations.
To ensure maximum protection from dirt and debris and accidents, wear a reinforced jacket, gloves, over-the-ankle footwear, and gloves even in the summer. If you wear clothing with a breathable mesh material, it will provide protection as well as ventilation in warm weather.
5 Watch Out for Hazards in the Road
Hazards like sand and gravel that may not pose a problem to a truck or a car, can be a death sentence for a rider. Potholes and other bumps can also be serious hazards. Make sure to slow down for these features. Don’t ride around a curve so quickly, that you can’t see the road ahead of you. You should approach features like railroad tracks at right angles.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident through the fault of another driver, please heed the safety tips for new motorcyclists and call the Law Offices of Michael West at (404) 913-1529.