Motorcycle Safety Tips
Now that spring is approaching in Connecticut, more and more people will begin taking the motorcycles out. After months in a garage, hibernating during the cold cruel months of winter, the throttles are being opened up and the chrome polished off as we get ready for another motorcycle riding season in Connecticut. Some people ride for pleasure and some ride to save on gas. It’s time once again to talk about motorcycle safety. No matter the reason there are dangers involved with riding a motorcycle that don’t necessarily apply to driving a car. Here are a few pointers to help keep yourself and those around you safe during the 2016 motorcycle riding season.
Wear a Helmet
Yes, this has been stressed many times by many people including the law, yet a lot of riders still go without a helmet. According to government studies, riders without a helmet are 40% more likely to suffer a fatal head injury while in a crash and three times more likely to suffer severe brain injuries. Helmets do save lives. Exposure to the skull and the brain can lead to potential trauma, so be safe and wear a helmet!
Wearing the right gear
When you take a ride on your motorcycle, you need to make sure that you wear the right gear, the right clothing, otherwise your whole body will feel uncomfortable and it may end up being disastrous. Wearing just jeans, a t-shirt, and sandals can lead to wind burn. You also expose yourself to flying debris that can cause severe scratches and cuts (have you ever had a rock hit a wind shield), as well as lots of road rash if you happen to slide off your motorcycle or lose control. Be sure to wear a leather jacket, gloves and full pants that can fully protect you in the wind, even in the summer. Footwear that protects your ankles and your legs are also a good choice, especially when riding in the wind. Wind can cause burns and irritation if your skin is exposed for any length of time. A good choice is to go for jackets that are made of mesh material that will allow you to breathe much more freely. You will also want a helmet visor or goggles that can protect your eyes from any dust particles that happen to fly in.
Always assume that the driver in front of you, behind you, or next to you, will do something out of the ordinary and disobey traffic laws. Be on the defensive and be careful. Notice road hazards and caution signs and be sure to always keep an eye out for pedestrians. Do not tailgate and keep a safe distance between you and another rider or driver and be wary when changing lanes or when other cars try to change lanes.
Weaving in and out of cars in a traffic jam should be strongly discouraged. You never know when someone might open a door or throw something out of their window.
Last but not least is to avoid bad weather. Many riders come out in spring anxious to ride after being unable to ride during the winter. If you’ve lived in Connecticut for more than a year then you know that the weather can change very rapidly. In the Spring it may be a beautiful, sunny 70 degree day one minute and then poring down rain the next. Snow is always a possibility until mid-April so never assume we’re out of the woods concerning winter weather. If possible, be sure to check the weather ahead of time when riding, and if you are already on the road when it starts to rain, be sure to avoid jerky movements as the ground can be very slippery. Be gentle with the brakes, the throttle, and the steering in order to prevent sliding from occurring and make sure to consider the wind to avoid being pushed down or off the road by a strong gust.
As a motorcyclist it’s even more important that you remain aware and alert at all times on the road. Motorcycle safety is a critical component to being a responsible rider. Riding a motorcycle is described by many as pure bliss or an escape from the every day life, and there are lots of motorcyclists in CT. Be vigilant and safe to avoid severe injury or death.
If you have been injured in an accident you do have rights. It’s important that you speak to an attorney immediately to understand those rights. We’re here to help you.
Remember car drivers..share the road!