Human beings have evolved with the centuries, and their ideas have evolved with them. From horse-drawn carts to the car and on to aeroplanes and space shuttles, we have imagined, developed and perfected a myriad means of transportation. These vehicles carry us along from one location to the next and bring us back home, each in a swifter fashion than the last. Of all the vehicles that travel along the ground however, the motorcycle is perhaps the most dangerous.
Riding a motorcycle is significantly different compared to driving a car and it requires a whole different skill set. These skills can be perfected though, through education and practice, and the risks of motorcycle riding can certainly be mitigated if proper regard is given to traffic laws and if certain precautions are taken.
- It is essential for motorcycle riders to wear a helmet – ideally with protection for the face and the eyes as well – at all times when riding. Not only does a helmet protect you from critical injuries in case of an accident, it is a legal requirement to wear one in most countries around the world.
- The head is not the only part of your body that you need to protect. Wear appropriate protective gear at all times – including leather clothing, gloves, and non-skid soles. Wearing reflective tape can also be helpful as it allows other drivers to see you more easily.
- Faster is not cooler, and it is definitely against the law. Obey the traffic laws at all times and stick to the legal speed limit to avoid accidents when riding a motorcycle. This is particularly important, as motorcycles have a greater chance of skidding and crashing than a car at faster speeds.
- Be mindful of the fact that an accident may not always be your fault. Make sure that your headlights are on and that you are visible to other drivers on the road. Never ride in a driver’s blind spot, be cautious when you see other vehicles that are about to turn, and signal as early as you possibly can before making a turn yourself.
- Always make sure that you are fresh and sober before you get on a motorcycle. Never ride if you are sleepy or fatigued as that will slow your reflexes and make it harder to avoid potential accidents. Even more dangerous is riding a motorcycle while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs.
The precautions for motorcycle riding begin well before you ever get on the road. To reduce the risks of any possible accidents from happening, make sure your motorcycle is roadworthy before you ride it.
- Test the visibility of your motorcycle every time you want to ride it. The headlights, indicators, and the tail lights should all be in perfect working condition.
- Check the levels of the coolant and hydraulic fluids and ensure that there are no signs of oil or gas leaks under the motorcycle.
- Make sure the tyres are in a good enough condition for the road by checking for any cracks or bulges, tyre pressure or signs of wear and tear.
If you happen to find yourself the victim of an accident despite all these precautionary measures, which would mean that the accident was not your fault, get in touch with Accident Advice Helpline for advice about how to deal with it and how to claim fair compensation.