UNITED STATES—A motorcycle ride can be exciting and enjoyable as a mode of transportation. But it also carries a high risk of accidents resulting in severe injuries or even death. According to NHTSA, motorcyclists are 29 times more likely to die in crashes than car occupants.
That’s why motorcycle riders need to prioritize safety on the road. If you are thinking of trying your hands on a motorcycle, this guide highlights some vital ways of staying safe that you may want to pay attention to, including some common causes of motorcycle accidents.
How to Stay Safe When Riding a Motorcycle
1. Take a Motorcycle Riding Course
Most people assume they can safely operate a motorcycle since they can drive a car. While you could, it’s important to understand that a motorcycle handles differently from a car and is inherently unstable. So, getting motorcycle lessons before getting on the road is important.
Some states require all riders to take a motorcycle safety course and an endorsement on their license before getting on the road. But irrespective of requirements in your state, it is a good idea to take a safety course as it could mean the difference between life and death.
2. Wear Safety Gear
Riding a motorcycle requires being in the right gear as a legal and safety requirement. Some states have stringent helmet rules, while others allow riders over 21 to choose to wear one.
According to the CDC, helmet use can prevent the rider’s death by up to 37 percent and the risk of head injury by 69 percent. So while having your hair flowing with the wind looks cool, it is best to have your head covered.
Besides the helmet, you will want to wear rider-quality denim or leather, which can help protect you from injuries caused by skidding over the tarmac in an accident. Other pieces of protective equipment for riders include protective glasses, gloves, and knee-high boots.
3. Work on Your Visibility
Poor visibility is among the leading causes of accidents for riders. But you can improve your visibility by wearing bright-colored clothes, preferably with reflective strips.
Some states require motorcycle riders to ride with their lights on at all times to improve visibility. Even when your state doesn’t require it, it is still a good idea.
Common Cause of Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycle accidents result from the same reasons as car accidents and can include
Distractions are any activities that take the mind, hands, or eyes of the road and can affect the rider, the driver, or the pedestrian involved in an accident.
The small size of the motorcycle makes it less visible and thus at a high chance of getting hit by a car
Driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol is the leading cause of death on American roads and can affect the driver or the rider’s ability to control a vehicle. Pedestrian intoxication can also contribute to a motorcycle accident.
According to data from the NCS, speeding was a factor in 29 percent of all fatalities on American roads in 2020. Speed is especially dangerous for motorcyclists considering motorcycles are inherently unstable and without protective features.
Other causes of motorcycle accidents include poor road conditions, inclement weather, faulty parts, and health complications, among others.
In most of the causes of the accidents mentioned above, there is always a responsible party. If that party is not you, you may be eligible for compensation.
However, getting compensation may not be as easy, so you may need to work with experienced motorcycle accident lawyers like Boohoff Law’s team if you hope to get fair compensation for your damages.
While enjoyable, riding a motorcycle is dangerous. But it is also true that millions enjoy their rides every year without getting into an accident.
While you may not control everything that happens on the road, you can take the precautions highlighted in this post to make your ride safe.