Nice weather and sunny skies make the summer an appealing time for motorcyclists. However, the small size of a motorcycle can make them hard to see by other drivers, and accidents often result in devastating injuries since the rider is exposed to the elements. The Insurance Information Institute reported bikers in 2014 were 27 times more likely to die in a collision per mile traveled than those who were riding in a car.
Maintaining vigilance of your surroundings is the best way to avoid an accident, but keep the following tips in mind this summer season. If you do find yourself involved in a motorcycle accident, talking with an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer can help ensure your rights are protected.
How Do I Avoid Motorcycle Accidents?
- Improve Visibility: If you’re riding a motorcycle, you cannot assume other drivers are watching or anticipating your presence on the road. Equipment or clothing that has colors like yellow or orange improves your visibility to others, and turning on lights at night helps other motorists determine where you are on the road, all of which decreases the risk of an accident.
- Get Professional Training: Motorcycle education classes or other expert guidance can teach you the intricacies of handling your motorcycle, and show your how to put situational awareness skills into practice as you ride to avoid dangerous situations.
- Slow Down: Many motorcycle accidents come as a result of speed, especially if the bike is high-performance. It is estimated the accident death rate of sports motorcycle riders is 2x-4x the rate of conventional motorcycles. Know the speed limits of your bike and adjust according to the weather, especially if there is snow, sleet or rain on the road.
- Don’t Split Lanes: Lane splitting is when a biker drives between two lanes of cars. Even if the traffic is stopped or slow moving, many drivers are not expecting to be passed. This creates an extremely dangerous situation for everyone on the road if, for example, a driver decides to make a quick lane change.
- Watch Out for Blind Spots: Bigger trucks or cars usually have areas where their mirrors do not reach, and a driver might then turn or merge lanes without ever seeing your motorcycle. Ensuring you are able to see a semi-truck or similar vehicles’ mirrors while next to them on the road keeps you out of a blind spot.
- Avoid Drugs & Alcohol: Riding under the influence of alcohol or drugs contributes to a lot of motorcycle accidents. In 2014, 30% of all deadly motorcycle crashes involved a rider with a BAC of 0.08 percent or higher. Drugs and alcohol use can affect the judgment skills of a biker and cause them to make potentially deadly mistakes.
There are a multitude of ways a motorcycle accident can occur. The roads are often the most congested and trafficked during the summer. If you do find yourself involved in a motorcycle accident, don’t go it alone. Call our office today at 1-800-35-TEXAS for a free consultation.