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Summer Safety on Your Motorcycle

It’s summertime and the perfect weather for riding your motorcycle. Riding by yourself or with a group of friends is fun and relaxing. But let’s face it, bikes are more dangerous than cars – and that’s part of the thrill of riding. We want you to have fun, but there are also some simple things you can do to improve your safety while you’re out there. This is by no means a complete and comprehensive list of all the safety steps you should take, but it’s a good list of tips you can remember:

Make yourself visible

And we don’t mean by wearing day-glow gear and loud clothing (!), we mean by putting you and your bike on a part of the road that makes you visible to other road users – if they don’t know you’re there, you’ve no chance. For example, if you’re following a truck or van, don’t go right up behind them because they have no rearview mirror. Ride to the rear side of them and look into their side view mirrors. If you can see the driver, they can see you!

Wear the right gear!

There’s a reason besides looking good that motorcyclists gear up in leather and Kevlar before hitting the road. They know what safety data backs up: Besides keeping riders comfortable in the elements, wearing proper riding gear every time — especially helmets — will improve the chances of surviving an accident.

Ride staggered

Riding with your friends in a group is fun, but don’t ride in single file down the road and don’t tailgate the bike in front of you. Because if they decide they need to stop quickly, you’re going to go straight into the back of that bike. Ride in a staggered formation. It gives you a good view of the road ahead and also if you need to stop suddenly, you have somewhere to go – you can go alongside the other bike instead of crashing into it’s rear.

Be aware of bad road conditions

When you’re riding in the winter, during bad weather, be aware and remind yourself that the roads that are normally good, well maintained and fun to ride can be a different story in the winter. They can become treacherous. Little rocks, bumps and potholes that you never noticed before can really cause you a lot of problems. Or, if it’s a frosty night but a sunny afternoon and you go out, but there’s not been any sun on the road all day, that road could still be frozen and slippery, so you need to take extra care.

Watch the line

When you’re out on your bike, use road markings and things around you to gather information about the road ahead, particularly if it’s a road you’re not familiar with. A good way of doing it is to pay attention to the center lines. Solid lines indicate there is a hazard or poor visibility up ahead while broken lines indicate passing is allowed and therefore the road ahead is probably okay. So, use road markings to your advantage.

Pass with care

When you’re riding in a group, don’t assume that just because the bikers ahead of you found it safe to pass someone, that it’s safe for you too. Often times it is not. Let them go, then have a look and make sure it’s safe for you to pass too. Ride for yourself – you’re in charge of your bike.

Always expect the unexpected

There’s an old rule of thumb that says, “If something can go wrong, . . . it probably will.”

Be Safe and have fun! And why don’t you give us a chance to requote your motorcycle insurance. We represent over 30 carriers so we do the shopping for you!