How to Stay Safe when Riding your New Motorcycle

Posted by Ben Davidson about 8 months ago
Nothing can quite compare to the feeling of buying a brand-new motorcycle. It’s a completely different way of driving, and you can feel much more connected to the world around you as well. You do however need to make sure that you are driving as safely as possible at all times because if you don’t then you could end up in a nasty accident that could have actually been avoided.
Know your Limits

If you are feeling sick, tired or even distracted then it’s a good idea for you to leave your bike at home. You are far more likely to have an accident when you are experiencing any of these emotions because you won’t be concentrating as much on the road. This can have huge consequences. One wrong turn could force you off the road and you have a much lower level of control over your bike when compared to a car.

T-CLOCS

It’s so important that you check your T-CLOCS. This stands for your Tyre, Control, Light, Oil, Chassis and Stand. These are checks that should be done every single time you go out on your bike. They don’t take long to do but again, it could stop you from having an accident. If you have never heard of this before then do a quick search to find an online checklist. Doing checks like this can also help you to avoid major repairs later down the line as well, so it is important that you keep this in consideration.

Stay Slow

It’s very easy to get caught up in the thrill of riding your bike. You can feel the road underneath your tyres, and the wind rushing through you. You do need to make sure that you hold back on the throttle however because a high percentage of motorcycle fatalities happen because people travel above the speed limit. Excessive speed gives you way less time to correct any errors, such as understeering, oversteering or even braking. When you are travelling at a high speed, you may even misjudge your speed on a curve. If you are able to slow down and stay at the same speed as the traffic around you then this will really help you to stay safe when you are on the road. If you have been in a motorcycle crash then you can get the help you need here.

Make Yourself Visible

Motorcycles really are outnumbered by other passenger vehicles. It’s said that they only account for 1% of vehicles on the road but they make up 10% of fatalities. One reason why so many motorcycle fatalities happen is because drivers simply don’t see them. Motorcycles are very small when compared to other vehicles and it’s very easy to get caught up in a blind spot. If you want to avoid all of this while also working hard to protect yourself then you need to make yourself as visible as possible. A lot of motorcycle stores sell a ton of high-visibility vests and they even come in neon colours as well. You can add some reflective strips to them and this can make even the most basic of leather jackets stand out. You might also want to add a headlight modulator. This is a device that will make your headlight flash really quickly, and it is very similar to a strobe light. It will really grab the attention of other drivers, even if you are in broad daylight.
Panic

On a good day, the highway is a very safe place and driving is a relatively easy task. When driving a car, if you panic, you just need to spin the wheel and slam onto the brakes. On a bike however, you need to twist your body, find a balance between steering and braking, and then try and avoid flying over the handlebars. This movement won’t come easy or naturally if you are a new driver so for that reason, it so important that you are able to practice your emergency braking. You might not have had to do this before, so take yourself to an empty parking lot or even sign up to a driving course. Repetition will train your body and even your mind, and it will also help you to avoid having a serious accident. The more riding time you have, the more familiar you will become with the bike as well so this is very important for you to keep this in consideration.

Be Cautious

Just because you have right of way, doesn’t mean that someone won’t try and pull out on you. The main reason why this happens is simply because the other person can’t see you. They may make a turn right in front of you, or they may even turn right into the bike itself. For this reason, it’s so important that you are able to stay alert as you go through intersections and that you also scan every part of the road before you enter it. If a vehicle that is coming from the opposite direction looks like it may be planning on making a left turn, you need to slow down and prepare to do an evasive manoeuvre. You also need to learn how to drive defensively and you also need to put the work in to try and learn the rules of the road.

Wear Appropriate Shoes

You may be tempted to wear short-sleeved shirts when you are out on the road, and this is especially the case if the weather is super-hot. You should avoid this where possible however because it can really cause you to experience serious injuries if you are ever in an accident. If you wear the right gear then you may only end up with a few grazes and lacerations, but if you don’t have any gear at all then it could end up way worse and you may even experience life-threatening injuries. All of this can be avoided if you just take the time to wear the right gear before you set off.
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