Tips on Motorcycle Safety and Accident Stats
Although motorcycles are both fun and fuel efficient, they are be more dangerous. In fact, according to the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, motorcyclists are 30 times more likely to experience fatalities during crashes than those who drive cars. Because of this statistic and more, it is important to take every safety measure possible when riding a motorcycle. Here are some motorcycle safety tips and statistics on motorcycle crashes in Texas.
Motorcycle Safety Tips
- Wear a helmet. Of a total of 430 total fatalities from motorcycle accidents in 2014, only 184 of the drivers were wearing helmets. A staggering 215 of the motorcyclists were wearing helmets. 31 of those fatalities have no clear tells of whether they had helmets on at time of crash or not. 50% of motorcyclists involved in fatal crashes in the year 2014 were not wearing helmets. Wearing helmets are one of the most vital safety measures a motorcyclist can take. Arguably, it is more important than wearing your seatbelt in a car, although that is an unnegotiable safety measure also. (According to the Texas Department of Transportation)
- Wear protective gear. It may seem a bit goofy at first, but wearing proper motorcycle gear can greatly increase your protection if you should crash. It will also increase your overall comfort while riding. Gear that protects against road rash, dirt, bugs, and wind are highly ideal. This gear is not difficult to find as a lot of motorcycle companies make it, but aim for leather, full pants, ankle-high shoes, gloves, and again, a helmet (facemask preferred).
- Drive defensively. It is vital motorcyclists are driving defensively, paying attention to every car around them. A study performed by University of South Florida’s Center for Urban Transportation Research found that 60% of crashes involving motorcycles were the car’s fault. It is important to use your signals when you’re turning or switching lanes. It is also important to be defensive in predicting car’s movements, paying special attention to cars switching lanes, hazards, and keeping a safe distance from the car in front of you.
- Know your skillset. When driving a motorcycle, it is important to know what skill level you’re at, so you don’t put yourself in situations you can’t ride out of. Just like when learning to drive a car, if you’re not at the level where you can ride at high speeds, avoid the freeway and main roads. Taking a motorcycle safety class such as one from the Texas Department of Public Safety might help you prepare for driving in places with heavy traffic.
- Be extra cautious in adverse weather. It’s common knowledge that driving in general becomes more dangerous in rain or other adverse weather. When it rains or storms, the roads become more slick, making it harder to control the bike on turns and stops. Make sure you’re leaving yourself enough room between you and other cars, and take turns slower. When riding in wind, give yourself enough room in the lane to compensate for any space you might lose if the wind blows your direction. If the wind is coming from your right and blowing you to the left, ride more towards the right side of the lane so you allow room for the wind gust to blow you to the left a bit.
If you’ve been involved in a motorcycle accident, give us a call today. We have the experience and knowledge to defend you in court and make sure you receive the compensation you deserve.