The vast majority of motorcycle crashes—about 80 percent—result in injury or death. Even if you’re the most experienced rider on the road, all it takes is one drunk, distracted, or careless motorist to cause a tragic collision.
Fortunately, there are steps you can take to reduce your risk of being involved in a crash. Although there’s no foolproof way to avoid all motorcycle injuries, you can hedge the odds in your favor by following the tips below:
1. Help Other Drivers See You
Motorcycles are far less visible than larger vehicles, yet many riders fail to take the necessary steps to help other drivers see them. Here are a few tips to consider:
- Buy a jacket and helmet with a reflective material;
- Wear a reflective vest;
- Keep your headlight on whenever you ride—even during the day;
- Avoid riding in other vehicles’ blind spots;
- Don’t split lanes; and
- Avoid riding at night.
2. Never Ride Under the Influence
About 1 in 4 motorcycle riders who died 2016 had a BAC above 0.08. The bottom line: Never ride under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
3. Obey the Speed Limit
If quick acceleration was one of the reasons why you purchased a motorcycle in the first place, it can be difficult to resist the temptation to speed. But the faster you travel, the less time you will have to react to unexpected hazards. Speeding also increases the force of impact in a collision.
4. Avoid Riding in Poor Weather
Although a passenger vehicle might be able to navigate through rain and high winds with ease, these hazards can be deadly to motorcyclists. Ice, snow, and other inclement conditions can also lead to devastating motorcycle crashes. When the weather turns, it’s best to play it safe and stay off the road or drive a passenger car.
5. Take an Advanced Safety Course
If you already have a motorcycle license, the idea of spending your time and money on an advanced course might not seem all that appealing. But the lessons and techniques you learn in these classes could save your life.
An advanced course will help fine-tune your skills in the following areas:
- Throttle control;
- Brake control;
- Taking low-speed turns;
- Vision techniques;
- Evasive maneuvers;
- Line selection; and
- Road speed cornering.
A helmet might not prevent a crash from occurring, but it is the single most important piece of safety equipment a motorcyclist can wear. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, helmets are about 37 percent effective at preventing deaths and 67 percent effective at preventing brain injuries in motorcycle accidents. Riders should also invest in a high-quality jacket, boots, and gloves.
Already Injured in a Motorcycle Crash? Contact Schneider & Palcsik
Although the tips above can reduce your risk of getting into a motorcycle crash, nobody is immune to collisions. If you or someone you love has been injured in a motorcycle crash, turn to Schneider & Palcsik for legal guidance.
Attorneys Mark Schneider and Drew Palcsik provide honest, aggressive, and compassionate representation to victims of personal injury and wrongful death. Our law firm has offices in Middlebury, Vermont and Plattsburgh, New York. Contact us online or call 518-594-6044 to get Schneider & Palcsik Injury Lawyers on your side.