Riding a motorcycle can be a fun and freeing experience, but there may also be many challenges that come along. For many, riding alongside large SUVs and tall semis can feel daunting, not to mention that you are riding in an open-air vehicle that exposes your body. Even the most experienced bikers might find themselves in an accident that could have been avoided. No matter how comfortable you feel on your bike, it is important to practice safe and defensive riding habits so that you do not find yourself in an unnecessary crash:
- Remain visible on the road: Make sure that drivers can easily see you on the road, especially in their blind spots. Consider wearing bright colors to increase your visibility, and position yourself so that a driver riding behind or ahead of you can spot you from a comfortable distance.
- Dress appropriately: Riding a motorcycle means that your body will likely be exposed to your surroundings, and it is important to wear clothes that can help keep you protected from any hazards. Wearing a helmet may seem like a basic step as a motorcyclist, but it can make a huge difference in the unexpected event that you fall and hit your head. Long sleeves and long pants can help protect you against the hard wind that comes with riding fast, especially in cold weather. Close-toed shoes or boots can help secure the grip of your feet on your bike.
- Avoid sharing a lane: While it may seem like a motorcycle is too small to take up an entire lane by itself, sharing a lane can threaten your safety, and it is also widely prohibited in Missouri. Even riding beside a small sedan or convertible can lead to an unnecessary accident. It is important that you take up your own lane so that you can have the space you need to make unexpected turns or maneuvers, as well as to remain as visible as possible to other motorists.
- Be mindful of road conditions: Many things can affect the condition of a road, including harsh weather and debris. Consider riding around any noticeable debris or hazardous conditions whenever possible. Slowing down over conditions like snow, ice and mud may also help prevent slipping on your motorcycle.
Avoid an unnecessary crash
Motorcycle crashes can lead to serious injuries and even fatalities. While an accident can happen anytime, taking the necessary safety precautions when you are biking can help lower the chances of a collision. Whether you ride recreationally or rely on your bike for transportation, any motorcyclist can benefit from practicing safe riding habits.