Riding a motorcycle is dangerous, regardless of how experienced you are. Because we see so many motorcycle cases where our clients are not at fault but still suffer serious injury, we thought we'd put together a few tips for the motorcycle community.
DO YOUR HOMEWORK
Most riders think that so long as they know how to operate the motorcycle, the rest will come naturally. For this reason, many riders forego taking a safety course, or even reading the safety manual that comes with most new bikes. The tuition for motorcycle safety courses is usually a lot lower than most riders expect, and the proper course could make all the difference. Most riders who have taken a course attest to the value of what they learn in the course.
WATCH FOR CARS TURNING LEFT
Cars turning left into motorcycles is the most common cause of motorcycle versus car accidents. Drivers of cars turning left often have a hard time discerning how fast the motorcycle is driving. When riding, pay close attention to cars turning left in front of you, or into your same lane. The knowledge that left hand turns account for the most injury-related accidents involving cars and motorcycles alone may help riders be more cautious and aware.
Similar to left hand turns, changing lanes can be difficult for automobile drivers when it comes to evaluating how fast the vehicles surrounding the driver are moving. For this reason, riders should pay special attention to areas of the road where cars are likely to attempt a lane change. Remember, not all drivers use their blinkers, and many drivers fail to check their blind spot prior to moving into another lane. Be attentive and keep an eye out for lazy and distracted drivers who might merge into the lane you're riding in without looking.
REAR END ACCIDENTS
Unfortunately, many injured motorcyclists are hit from behind by inattentive and distracted drivers. Remember, your brake light, no matter how bright, is smaller than the brake light of a car (which has two large brake lights).
When braking, remember to pump your brakes. This is not only better for the wear and tear on your bike, but it also makes your brake light flash on and off, which tends to draw the attention of other drivers on the road. Also, when you do come to a stop, do so not directly behind the vehicle in front of you, but to the side, if space allows.
SAND AND GRAVEL
Especially on turns, sand or gravel on the road can be especially dangerous for motorcycle riders. If one of your wheels slips too much, losing control of your bike can happen quickly and recovery from a slide can be difficult, if not impossible. Take extra precaution when riding in areas known to have debris, gravel, and sand on the road. Similarly, when riding in the early morning hours or late at night, be aware that more condensation on the road can lead to minimized grip between your tires and the road.
If you are involved in a motorcycle accident in California and you need an experienced attorney to help you recover, call our office today. We will provide you with a full consultation at no cost to you, and we'll advise you as to your best options moving forward.