Most motorcyclists understand that riding a motorcycle is more dangerous compared to operating a vehicle. When motorcycle accidents happen, they often result in catastrophic injuries and fatalities. According to 2015 report by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), motorcyclists were 29 times more likely than passenger car occupants to die in a crash per vehicle mile traveled, and nearly five times more likely to suffer injuries.
The best way to avoid becoming another motorcycle accident statistic is to pay close attention to safety. Many accidents can be avoided and prevented by relentless vigilance and continual education about the safest way to ride.
The following are several important safety tips to help you avoid devastating motorcycle accidents:
- Wear a helmet. According to the NHTSA, for every 100 motorcyclists killed in a collision while not wearing a helmet, 37 would have survived if they had been wearing one. Furthermore, there is a significant reduction of non-fatal injuries due to helmet use. Ensure that your helmet adheres to Department of Transportation standards and have one available for passengers.
- Wear protective gear. Protect yourself by wearing sunglasses or goggles (if your helmet isn’t equipped with a visor), a jacket, long pants, boots, and full-fingered gloves. The fabric of your clothing should be comprised of an abrasion-resistant material, such as leather, and fit close to your body. Bright colors are best in order to be visible to other drivers.
- Obtain professional training. Motorcyclists who are self-taught or taught by their peers account for over 90% of bikers involved in motorcycle crashes. Learning from professionals could save your life.
- Keep your motorcycle in excellent condition. Maintaining your motorcycle is of substantial importance to safety. Frequently check your engine, brakes, turn signals, headlamps, tires, and other gear.
- Do not drink and ride. Nearly half of motorcycle accidents involving a single rider are caused by speeding or alcohol use. However, both of these actions often go hand-in-hand. Not only is it against the law to operate any sort of motor vehicle while intoxicated, it is extremely dangerous.
- Avoid sharing lanes. Cars do not expect to share lanes with other vehicles, often not noticing a motorcycle sharing a lane with them.