As riding season starts to unfold I thought it was time we have a refresher course to give us pointers that will help us in our travels. K and G Cycles (www.kandgcycles.com) wants you to keep in mind this is not a list that is a sure fire way to keep you safe, but if we practice these steps, and ride smart, they will certainly keep us out of harms way more.
For those who’ve stored their bike for the cold winter months, spring is an exciting time, the warmer weather, the budding flowers, and the longer evenings. All that is begging you to get out riding again. But let’s not be too hasty! We know you are itching to ride, but let’s not forget one of the most important thing – Safety First. May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month for just that reason. People are anxious to get out of their cooped up houses and get on the road but they may get too excited to remember some basic motorcycle safety practices. Here are ten motorcycle safety tips that can keep you alive and well this season:
1) Make Eye Contact – Why? Never assume others see you. Always try to make eye contact with drivers who may be about to pull into your oath.
2) Read “Vehicle Language” – Why? – Even when pedestrians, cyclists, and drivers do see you approaching, they will often misjudge your speed and distance.
3) Watch out for left-turning vehicles – Why? – Getting hit by an oncoming vehicle that is turning left is the most common type of motorcycle/vehicle accident.
4) Check behind when turning left from a Highway – Why? – The drivers behind you may not notice your brake or turn signals so make sure you watch your mirrors and have plenty of space between you and those behind you.
5) Look out for hazardous road conditions – Why? Wet Roads, Fluid Spills, Sand, Gravel, Highway Sealant, Railroad Tracks, Pothole, and other road surface hazards significantly decrease available traction, and this could lead to an accident.
6) Take it easy on those curves – Why? – Curves are a hot spot for accidents. You might overshoot your lane and cross the center line, resulting in an accident. Curves are also subject to a lot of the hazards mentioned in #5. Watch the road ahead, slow down, and choose the correct lane position before entering a curve.
7) Wear a good quality Helmet – Why? – In recent studies, it has been shown Helmets prevented head injuries in almost 68% of the accidents studied, and prevented fatalities in 29% of the crashes studied.
8) Wear Protective Clothing designed for Motorcycles – Why? – Proper riding gear can provide protection during an accident, as well as shield you from the weather and flying debris. The right gear can also keep you warm and dry, allowing you to stay alert, focused,and coordinated. You will also want to dress in layers so you can adjust to the changing conditions. For those of you daredevils, shorts offer no protection, and blue jeans are sketchy at best.
9)Protect your Eyes and Face – Why? – Constant wind can make your eyes water, decreasing your ability to spot road hazards. Insects, dust , and debris can hurt, especially when you get hit in the eye with one or more of these items. If you subscribe to #7, than just make sure you have enough coverage and a good fit.
10) Be Visible to Others – Why? – It is best to wear bright colored, reflective clothing. If you want to add to it’s effectiveness, you can add a reflective vest too. You may also choose a brightly colored helmet. Ride in the lane position that allows other drivers to easily see you and gives you room to move. Make sure you avoid riding in their blind spots.
At K and G Cycles (www.kandgcycles.com) we want to do more than be your place for motorcycle parts, we also want to bring you safety awareness. Stay safe, be alert, be seen, and make wise decisions.