Everyone knows that riding a motorcycle can be dangerous. It is 100% up to us, the motorcyclist, to take safety into his or her own hands.
There are a lot of wonderful motorcycle safety books out there. If you live in the United States you have access to the Motorcycle Safety Foundation’s courses. For those of us who don’t live in the US, the books are available. Unfortunately the books are very fear oriented. They try to scare the reader into following safety tips. So I’m going to sum up some of the motorcycle safety tips without the fear.
Motorcycle Safety Tips
- Never, ever, ever drink and drive. Even a little bit of a drink can impair your driving
- Make sure your motorcycle is in good condition – check brakes & oil regularly, that all lights work, and that you have correct tire pressure and good tires
- When you drive make sure you are not hungry, tired, or thirsty. Even these things can distract you from being as safe as possible
- If you drive at night give your eyes time to adjust to the dark after stepping out of a well lit place before driving
- Remember, never, ever assume another drivers can see you. Assume you are invisible to car drivers.
- Be aware of a car’s blind spot and try not to ride in it for long
- Use your mirrors to check behind you but remember that you also have a blind spot – turn your head and look!
- Keep your eyes moving – never have them fixed on one spot
- Always look where you want the bike to go… if you see something on the road, do not stare at it. Instead look at the path you want the motorcycle to go.
- Give yourself time to brake. Only drive as fast as you can brake. If you can’t see ahead then slow down!
- Always use your brakes! You can engine brake, but your brake lights will not go on – use your foot or hand brake so the vehicles behind you know you are slowing down!
- When you are riding in a group always ride your own ride! Go as fast or as slow as YOU are comfortable with.
- Wear ALL your gear ALL THE TIME! Even if you are going to drive for 5 minutes, if you are on a road you should wear all your gear
- When you turn, start on the outside of the turn, and in the turn be on the inside. End on the outside again.
- Use your blinkers! They are there for a reason.
- When you turn off the motorcycle at the end of your trip, use the kill switch. That way, when you need to use it in an emergency it will be a natural reflex.
- When you start feeling comfortable on a motorcycle is when your chance of having an accident increase. Always remember that you must be 100% aware to avoid accidents!
These are just some of the tips for motorcycle safety tips to help make your ride safer and better!
Motorcycle Beginner’s Book
For those of you who would like to be even safer, I can recommend two books. The first is for complete beginners – Motorcycling Excellence. It goes over how a motorcycle works, basic riding skills, riding strategies, gear, motorcycle care, group riding, countersteering, safe cornering and some off road riding techniques. It is really a perfect book for beginner motorcyclists and I found it extremely useful!
Motorcycle Safety Guide
Proficient Motorcycling, the Ultimate Guide to Riding Well is great for all motorcyclists – whether you have been riding for years or just a few months, you will find tips that are extremely useful and will help you ride more safely.
Remember, on a motorcycle you can never be too safe. I would recommend again and again to all my motorcycling friends to read these books and improve your motorcycle safety. Nobody can ever have too many motorcycle safety tips!