Defensive Driving for Motorcyclists in the Spring
It’s officially spring and with the weather warming up most motorcyclists are chomping at the bit to get out on their bikes for the first ride of the New Year. Whether you’re a newer motorcyclist or an experienced one, it’s always best to keep refreshed on defensive driving tips to make your ride as happy and accident-free as possible.
The only way to ride safely on a motorcycle is to drive defensively. Based on Charlie’s 30 plus years of experience and backed up by AAA, most motorcycle collisions are caused by drivers who say they did not see the motorcycle. The best way to make yourself noticeable to the other drivers around you are to wear bright colored clothing, keep your headlights on at all times, always signal when your intention is to make a turn or switch a lane, avoid driving in other motorists blind spots and use your horn if you think other drivers are not aware of your presence before you make any moves.
Spring time weather can also play a big role in riding your motorcycle safely. The weather can be very unpredictable in the spring. Quick rain showers, melting snow, muddy conditions and glare can wreak havoc on motorcyclists by making the roads slick and hazardous. Roads are the most slippery after a quick rain shower because oil and dirt rise to the surface and have not had a chance to be washed away. Spring storms can also come quickly and can be severe at times with high winds. If you are on your motorcycle and get caught up in one of these storms, find shelter or stop under an overpass until the storm passes.
Motorcyclists also need to be aware of road conditions as well during their rides. Potholes are everywhere, road cracks and puddles can also make for very dangerous riding conditions. Hitting a pothole on a motorcycle can cause the rider to easily lose control and can cause serious damage to the bike itself. If you find yourself going into unfavorable road conditions, do not slam on your brakes or try to swerve as that can cause you to lose control, slow down as much as possible when driving over that road hazard. Don’t be fooled by a small puddle, they can easily hide a large pothole. Always be aware of your surroundings, stay focused and look for these types of hazards to avoid.
Last but not least, always wear a helmet whether it’s the law or not. Many bikers have told Charlie they feel safer driving without a helmet because they can hear and see better. Perhaps that is true for some, but I see the brain injuries and medical scans if they are hit. Helmets will help save your life if you ever find yourself in a motorcycle accident. Helmets are required by law in Ohio for people 17 years and younger.
In Michigan, the choice is yours to wear a helmet or not if you meet the qualifications, which are you have to be 21 years of age or older and have at least $20,000 in first-party medical benefits.
If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident, contacting a personal injury attorney as soon as possible will make the claims process much easier. Attorney Charles V. Contrada will explain your legal options, guide you through the process and assist you in dealing with insurance companies and the company of the party involved.
To speak to attorney Charles V. Contrada about a motorcycle accident in Ohio or Michigan, call 419.841.4400. Charles has helped thousands of individuals with motorcycle accident claims and will explain the legal options that are available to you. Call Contrada & Associates for comprehensive legal guidance that will help you to receive the most favorable outcome.