Commuting to work on your motorcycle is not the same as recreational biking. You will be sharing the road with impatient, distracted, and often aggressive commuting traffic and will be doing this twice daily, five or more days per week. You are at a higher risk of getting into motorcycle accidents because of the dangers of commuting traffic, the riding dangers of urban areas, and the frequency of your exposure to these hazards.
Here are four tips for commuting safely to and from work:
- Choose a motorcycle friendly route. As you know, driving a car and riding a motorcycle are two different experiences. The hectic commuting route that is doable in your car, could very well be a nightmare of hazards on your bike. You probably chose the car commuting route because it was the quickest. However, choosing a safer route that is slightly longer will reduce your accident risk and won’t add extra stress to your already stressful work day.
- Avoid blind spots and cruising next to other vehicles. Commuters are in a hurry, stressed-out, and distracted which means they will do unexpected and dangerous things. You don’t want to be in their way when they make an impulsive or thoughtless maneuver. Avoid lingering beside them or in their blind spots.
- Assume no one can see you. Riding defensively means assuming that cars will cut you off, drive into you while changing lanes, and turn into you at intersections. At the same time, you should always use your turn signals and make your best effort at being visible. To compensate for your small size, wear bright colors, and install auxiliary lights on your bike.
- Learn how to read other motorists. Before changing lanes, motorists will check their mirrors, turn their heads, and increase their speed. Motorists stopped at intersections often position their cars and angle their front wheels in the direction they intend to turn. These are just two of the many tell-tale signs of a motorist’s intentions. Avoid surprise maneuvers by getting to know these common habits of drivers.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident and need advice, contact us to learn more about your options.