So many people love motorcycling, whether it their primary method of commuting or just a leisurely pass time. It is a thrilling experience flying down a road with nothing but the wind against you, a feeling of freedom that is hard to replicate with other vehicles. Still, despite the immense amount of fun you can have when riding a motorcycle, there are many risks that come along with it.
Motorcycle accidents can be severe – a direct consequence of the openness of the vehicle. Additionally, not everyone takes the right precautions when riding (some people do not even wear helmets!). Motorcycle accidents are one of the leading causes of death in the world, killing more than 1 million people annually.
In order to safely enjoy your motorcycle, you need to be aware of the potential risks associated with it. Here we’ll look at five of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents, so you know exactly how to avoid them.
- Sudden or Risky Lane Changes
It is relatively common knowledge that drivers sharing the road with motorcyclists should leave a little extra breathing room in the lane for the bikers. Whether that means scooting to one side of the lane to let one pass or completely changing lanes altogether, most drivers are well aware and respectful of the needs of cyclists on the road.
What many bikers do not realize, however, is that it is their responsibility to respect cars and other vehicles as well. Be careful not to weave in and out of traffic haphazardly if you happen to be in a rush. Give drivers a chance to check their blind spots before getting too close.
- Lane Splitting
On that note, it is also very common for motorcyclists to do something called “lane-splitting.” Not only is this a safety hazard, it is also illegal in many states. This practice is especially difficult when driving at high speeds, as you need to be wary of mirrors and car doors. If there is traffic, keep yourself safe by simply driving at pace with the rest of the vehicles on the road.
- Bad Road Conditions
Due to the smaller size and narrow profile of the motorcycle, it is much more vulnerable to imperfections in the road. Things such as potholes, cracks in the asphalt, and inclement weather can put a motorcyclist in danger. Other drivers neglecting to use their signals in such conditions can make matters worse as well.
- Sudden Traffic Stops or Hazards
Some motorcyclists drive much too fast for their own good, taking away their ability to keep an eye out for debris that could be ejected from vehicles or cars stopping altogether. When you drive too fast you significantly shrink your stopping distance, severely compromising your safety. Always follow the speed limit, and if need be, drive slightly under it to allow yourself to remain fully aware of everything on the road.
- Driving Under the Influence
Because of its unique design, many people mistake motorcycles to be a “safer alternative” to driving a traditional car when under the influence. However, it is imperative that you recognize that the motorcycle is just as dangerous as a car, if not more, when you are in such a compromised state. Never under any circumstances should you drink and drive any vehicle, including motorcycles.
The experienced motorcycle accident lawyers at Rutter Mills have provided additional information on the top causes of motorcycle accidents so that you can ride more safely: https://www.ruttermills.com/motorcycle-accident/common-causes/