There are are now more motorcyclists on the road than ever. What can car drivers and motorcycle riders do to make the roads safer? Here are a few ideas...
>>>For the motorcycle rider>>>
- Wear a reflective vest, especially at night.
- Wear a helmet with reflective tape or stickers.
- Wear as much protective gear as you are comfortable with. Decent leather or armored mesh is important to protect your body's soft parts.
- Do NOT wear camouflage clothing. You want to be seen, not blend in.
- Do NOT wear shorts. A simple dumped bike or slow speed lowside can seriously rip up unprotected skin.
- Perform regular maintenance on your bike. Your life depends on it proper operation.
- Ride within your limits.
- Take at least one day a month and practice your slow speed maneuvers and emergency stops.
- Read at least one book per year on rider safety or riding techniques.
- Take a safety class. They are typically less than $150 and after you pass, you may well be a better rider and qualify for a lower insurance premium. (Check with your insurance company.)
- NEVER, EVER drink and ride.
- Always look for motorcycles. Remember, we are a lot smaller than you.
- Understand that we pay road taxes and vehicle registration the same as you.
- Be very careful when turning left across an oncoming traffic lane. Many, many fatal accidents happen when a car driver fails to see a motorcycle coming in the opposite direction.
- Give a motorcycle extra space. Don't stop right behind their rear wheel. It makes riders nervous. Give them six feet at a stop, or more.
- Always use your turning signals and follow the driving rules and laws of your state.
- If you have something in the bed of your truck or strapped to your car, make sure it is secure. Even an empty plastic soda bottle out the window can cause a motorcycle to loose its grip on the road and throw its rider to its death.
- Remember, cars are big, heavy and hard. Motorcycles are small, light and their riders soft.
- Keep in mind that a 15 MPH accident between two cars usually involves calling the police and insurance companies. That same accident between a car and a motorcycle will involve an ambulance, and likely the coroner.
- Use your lights anytime you are on the road.
- NEVER, EVER drink and drive.
(image above is courtesy of the Texas DMV)