Now that summer is on the horizon, you are likely taking your motorcycle out more frequently. As a motorcyclist, nothing is better than when the winter storms and spring showers go away. Just because you are safer from inclement weather does not mean the roads are inherently safe. In fact, summer is the perfect season to review some essential motorcycle safety guidelines.
Be seen as much as possible
Even if you are the best rider in the world, you are still at risk of being in an accident if drivers do not notice you. You can reduce this likelihood by wearing reflective or bright clothing, keeping your headlights on all the time and using turn signals to communicate your intentions. You should also be wary of sharing lanes or staying too close to cars, as you may end up in blind spots.
Even if you deck yourself and your motorcycle out in strobe lights and reflective tape, you must still be on the defensive. You should still ride your motorcycle as if you are invisible to others. Essentially, you should always lean towards caution when near other vehicles or pedestrians. This means scanning the road ahead, giving yourself space between vehicles, taking time with lane changes and being ready to make sudden turns to avoid collisions.
Inspect and maintain your motorcycle
A well-maintained ride goes a long way in keeping you safe. Make sure your motorcycle has:
- Working headlight, brake light, tail light and turn signals
- Tires with sufficient tread
- Functioning mirrors and horn
- Working rear and front brakes
- The battery in good condition
- Proper fluid level
- Safe belt or chain tension
Assess the condition of your motorcycle before each ride, and take it to the shop for tune-ups and repairs as necessary.