Stay Safe While Riding a Motorcycle

It is fun riding a motorcycle. Despite the fun and adrenaline rush, several fatal road accidents involving motorcycles are recorded each year. Because of this, it is important to make safety your foremost concern when riding a motorcycle. Most motorcycle crashes are very preventable, and the unavoidable ones can be made less fatal. Learning the principles of motorcycles riding, observing traffic laws combined with common sense can help you stay safe when riding a motorcycle. Here are a few important motorcycle safety tips to help you ride safely.

Wear Protection

Stay safe by always having your helmet on when riding a bike. Your helmet can protect you from severe or fatal head injuries in case of an accident. Not using a helmet increases a rider’s chance of sustaining a fatal head injury by five times.  Using an eyewear or a protective face shield can protect your eyes from items flying by and maintain a clear vision of the road. There are protective clothing and gears for motorcycle riders that help to minimize the amount and severity of injuries sustained in the case of an accident. These include safety boots, gloves, leather clothing, reflective clothing or tapes (to help other road users see you, especially when riding at night), and so on.

Obey Traffic Laws

Learn and observe traffic laws as well as other rules for using the road.  Speed kills. Ride within stipulated speed limits.  Always stop at stop signs and observe both sides of the road before joining the road from a junction. Stay safe by being a defensive rider. Don’t assume that other road users can see you because many times they don’t. The Hurt Report shows that most motorcycle-car accidents happened because the car driver didn’t see the oncoming motorcycle and violated the motorcyclist’s right-of-way.

Always have your headlights on, put on reflective clothing and don’t stay in a driver’s blind spot. Be careful of vehicles that are taking a turn. Don’t take steep sharp turns. Don’t turn suddenly too. Give clear signals well in advance before changing your direction. You could harm yourself and other road users when you drink and ride. Take a ride only when you’re sober, not fatigued,  concentrated emotionally down or feeling drowsy in order not to impair your ability to react quickly and correctly.

Before hitting the road, ensure that you do all the necessary checks to ascertain that your motorcycle is in a good shape and is road worthy. Ensure that your throttle and clutch are working smoothly; there are no gas or oil leakages; your taillights, headlights, and signals are functioning correctly; coolants and hydraulic fluids are adequate; your tire threads are not worn out. Always clean and adjust your mirrors before riding out. Always use your horns. Make sure that they are functional and very loud before you ride out. Your brakes can save you. Ensure that your front and rear brakes are fully functional before you hit the road. Don’t be tempted to perform stunts when riding your motorcycle. It is not a bicycle.