There’s nothing like riding a new motorcycle for the first time! That sound and feel are well worth waiting to get the bike of your dreams.
However, shopping around and getting a good motorcycle loan were just the first steps. It’s time to put all your training to work and demonstrate good riding habits.
Here’s what you need to know to stay safe when riding a motorcycle.
Table of Contents
1. Wear the Right Gear
Unlike an automobile, the only protection a motorcyclist has between them and the pavement is the clothing that they’re wearing. That’s why it’s critical that they invest in some high-quality motorcycle gear before they hit the road.
Some important items to get will include:
- A crash helmet – Look for one that meets ECE 22.05 European certification
- Boots – Get a pair with shin protection
- Gloves – A decent pair of sliders will protect your wrists if you fall
- A leather coat – Get one that’s thick and durable
- Pants – Look for a pair with built-in knee protection
2. Check the Weather Ahead of Time
Bad weather can be a real concern for motorcyclists. Even a little bit of rain can cause poor visibility and a loss of traction.
This can be done by doing something as simple as checking a reliable weather app from your smartphone before heading out. Don’t just look at the overall status for the day. Scroll through the hour-by-hour report and be aware of any possibility of short, isolated storms.
If one unexpectedly appears while you’re riding, pull over underneath a covered area such as an overpass. Wait for the bad weather to pass and take your time riding on wet pavement.
3. Be Visible
It may be stereotypical for bikers to wear black or dark colors. However, don’t make this mistake. The more you stand out against your surroundings, the easier it will be for other motorists to see and avoid hitting you.
A good way to do this is to keep it in mind as you’re buying your motorcycle gear. For example, pick a leather coat with light-colored stripes or a brightly colored helmet.
4. Pass on the Left
It may be perfectly legal in some states to pass on the right or even weave in-between other motorists. But this is also unnecessarily risky since other drivers won’t think to look for you, especially those who are inexperienced.
For this reason, don’t be in a rush and follow the standard rules of the road. Pass on the left and wait until it’s more than safe to do so.
5. Watch Out for Others
More often than not, people get into accidents because of a poor decision from another motorist and not something they did. That’s why you’ll want to be very vigilant and keep a safe driving distance from other people. The further away you are, the more time you’ll have to react if they suddenly break or shift lanes.
Remember that even if it is their fault, physics is not on your side. Automobiles outweigh motorcycles, and so if the two of you were to collide, you’d, unfortunately, be the one in danger. Therefore, it pays just to avoid the situation.
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The Bottom Line
Although getting a new bike and taking it for a ride is exciting, you’ll want to remember to exercise good habits before you do. Taking measures like wearing protective clothing and checking the weather is a good start. But also, be sure to ride smart by staying visible, passing when it’s safe, and keeping your eye on others.
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