Motorcycle riders take a risk every time they leave the safety of their garage. All motorists, including car and truck drivers, are at risk of accident or injury on the road. However, the openness and much smaller size of a motorcycle increases the risk of serious injury and death if an accident occurs. A relatively small accident for a car driver could be fatal for a motorcycle rider. This is not to say that motorcycle riding is inherently dangerous. If you consistently use safe riding practices and remain educated on the dangers of motorcycle riding, your risk of serious injury and death is reduced significantly.
Tips for Safe Motorcycle Riding
- Always wear a helmet – this is probably the most important safety precaution any motorcycle rider can take, yet so many choose to ride without a helmet. More than 80% of all motorcycle related fatalities involved a rider without a helmet. Currently, only 19 states have the universal helmet law which mandates that all riders wear a helmet all the time. Unfortunately, Pennsylvania rescinded the mandatory helmet law several years ago.
- Never drink and ride
- Do not speed
- Do not engage in “lane-splitting” – this is when a motorcycle rider weaves in and out of two lanes of traffic.
- Avoid hazardous road and weather conditions
- Pay close attention to cars making left-hand turns – nearly half of all motorcycle accidents involve cars making left-hand turns. The accidents usually occur when the rider is going straight through an intersection, passing the turning car, or trying to pass another car.
- Drive defensively – even if you are the safest rider on the road, other drivers and riders may be distracted. Texting and looking at a GPS are common distractions, but sometimes cars and trucks simply don’t see you. It is easy for a motorcycle to get lost in a motorist’s blind spot. Never assume another motorist sees you.
In addition to reducing the more obvious risk factors, there are additional measures you can take to protect yourself and those you share the road with. For starters, a comprehensive insurance plan is essential. In the event that you are involved in an accident, a good policy can provide significant financial help with medical costs for you and any passenger injured in the accident. You should also be aware of the bias toward motorcycle riders. It is often assumed that riders are risky and careless and that an accident involving a motorcycle must be the fault of the motorcycle rider. If you are involved in an accident while riding your motorcycle, a skilled personal injury attorney can help you overcome this bias and get the help you need.
Contact the Law Offices of Jeffrey H. Penneys, Esq.
Jeffrey H. Penneys, Esq. has years of experience as a motorcyclist, and has been fighting for the rights of accident and injury victims for almost two decades. He has successfully obtained compensation for clients in countless vehicle accident cases, involving motorcycles. If you are suffering from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident, contact our office today for a free consultation. We will help you understand your rights and we will fight aggressively to get you the compensation you deserve.