Florida is a great place to ride motorcycles. Despite the rainy season, we get to ride our bikes year-round. This means that other motorists who live here should be used to seeing motorcycles and be comfortable sharing the road with them. However, there are plenty of tourists around who may not be used to it.
According to the National Motorcycle Institute, riding a motorcycle is much more dangerous than driving a car or truck. The main reasons for this are the size of the bike and the nature of the vehicle, which has two wheels and little to protect the driver from injury.
10 Tips for safe riding
The best strategy for improving your chances for a safe trip is to practice the following safe driving tips:
- Ride at your ability and experience: Do not do it if there are doubts that you cannot execute the maneuver safely or drive at the speed of other traffic.
- Take a safety course: Motorcycle safety courses are helpful for riders of all levels, providing tips for bike handling and avoiding dangerous situations.
- Always check the bike before starting: Drivers think nothing of getting behind the wheel of a car and just going, but bikers should check the chain or drive train, lights and tires before hopping on.
- Watch your speed: Motorcycles are not only more maneuverable than cars but also can have a lot of acceleration, so be careful to follow speed limits or drive more cautiously if conditions demand it.
- Avoid bad weather: Two wheels and wet pavement (even after the rain has stopped) are not a good match.
- Wear safety equipment: Get a helmet that covers your face, and also wear a jacket, pants and footwear that enable you to operate the bike safely.
- Assume that drivers do not see you: Unless you make eye contact with the driver, assume that they do not see you.
- Drive defensively: Some people do not like motorcyclists and use their larger vehicle to taunt or bully motorcyclists on the road.
- Educate a passenger: Riding double can be fun, but make sure that they understand what to do with their body when taking turns and sitting at stops.
- Ride happy: Feeling angry or aggressive on a motorcycle can lead to reckless decisions.
Riders are often not at fault
Riders who follow the traffic rules and exercise the basic safety precautions listed above have a better chance of arriving at their destination safely. Unfortunately, riders’ safety is not entirely in their own hands, so crashes will happen, often with serious or life-changing results. Those injured are always advised to seek medical help immediately, but it is also wise to consult with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney who has experience with motorcycle crashes.