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Motorcycle Safety Tips: They're Lifesavers!

Nov 12, 2007
Motorcyclists are amongst the most vulnerable in the motoring public. In any collision with a four-wheel vehicle, a motorcyclist is always at a severe disadvantage. An accident that is just a simple panel-beating exercise for a car or truck can mean death or disability for a motorcyclist. It is not difficult to lose a limb, seriously damage internal organs, or become paralysed.

Motorcycle Safety Tip #1: Buckle On That Helmet

There is often disagreement between those who believe in wearing a motorcycle helmet and those that don't. Commonsense would say it is hard to isolate one single argument from the no-helmet brigade that makes any sense. Research statistics further substantiate the case for wearing helmets, showing that huge numbers of motorcyclists escape death by wearing them.

A very common motorcycle accident scenario is a rider being thrown off and landing on their head. For those wearing a good helmet, serious head injuries can usually be averted. An ejected rider might end up with a severe headache, but at least they are alive!

Even head injuries sustained at low impact can be fatal. A recent case was reported when a stationary motorcyclist was messing around in his driveway, lost his balance, fell off the bike and hit his head on the concrete driveway. He died from the injury a few days later. Because he was not going anywhere, he did not have his helmet on. The result was tragic and could easily have been averted.

A helmet is certainly not an iron-clad guarantee that an accident or serious injury will be avoided--no safety device is. However, wearing a motorcycle helmet will certainly improve the odds of surviving a motorcycle accident.

Motorcycle Safety Tip #2: Wear Brightly-colored, Protective Clothing

Motorcyclists should always wear the appropriate gear for protection and be clearly visible to other motorists. Motorcycle accidents can be pretty horrendous. Bikers ejected from their motorcycle can skid along the bitumen, and without protective leather clothes or boots can forcibly embed rocks, glass and other objects into their flesh. This can have disastrous consequences in pain and suffering which could easily have been avoided.

Motorcycle Safety Tip #3: Keep Awake And Stay Sober

Drowsiness and fatigue can seriously impair a motorcyclist's reflexes and ability to react. Bikers should avoid riding when very fatigued and take regular short breaks from driving. Alcohol and other drugs also seriously affect judgment and should be strictly avoided when riding a motorcycle.

Motorcycle Safety Tip #4: Abide By Traffic Laws

A substantial number of motorcycle riders involved in accidents are driving without licenses or are improperly licensed. Motorcyclists should ensure their licence is always up to date, and take care to obey the traffic laws. A regular refresh of road rules and local traffic laws is highly recommended, and most importantly ...... don't speed!

Motorcycle Safety Tip #5: Bike Safety And Planning

Motorcyclists should perform a motorcycle safety inspection before each ride. Accidents often occur as a result of mechanical problems. Plan ahead when riding in a group. Determine your route in advance and make sure it is coordinated with the other riders.

Motorcycle Safety Tip #6: Continuous Learning And Improvement

A large percentage of motorcyclists involved in accidents have had no driver training. Enrolling in a motorcycle training course is a good way of developing basic riding skills. Once the basic techniques are acquired, motorcyclists can sharpen their street-riding and accident-avoidance skills by taking an defensive driving course or advanced program for motorcyclists.

Motorcyclists have a responsibility to protect themselves as far as they can. By learning motorcycle safety tips such as wearing a good helmet, eye protection, protective clothing, and good boots, bikers can be better equipped when riding. You know it makes sense!
About the Author
Jean Littman is co-owner of DefensiveDriverSense.com which provides quality tools and resources for defensive driver education and motorcycle safety.
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