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For many people, motorcycles symbolize freedom and independence. But they do come with added risks. Without the protection of a steel outer structure and air bags and seatbelts, motorcycle riders are considerably more likely to be injured during a crash.
According to federal government estimates, in 2015, motorcycle fatalities were 29 times the number of those for people traveling in cars. Every motorcycle enthusiast should consider the following basic safety tips to increase visibility, protect themselves from injury, and avoid accidents altogether.
The Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) offers several different training courses for both new and experienced riders to improve their safety skills. Courses are available at local facilities across the country and online. Ask your insurance company if completing an MSF riding course will reduce your insurance rates.
Helmet laws vary by state. However, there is no disputing that wearing a helmet that meets U.S. Department of Safety standards significantly decreases your risk of serious head injury or death in the event of a motorcycle accident. The ideal helmet weighs at least three pounds and has a thick foam lining and a strong chin strap. A face shield and googles are also recommended.
Replace your helmet every five years, or right away if you find any cracks or dents.
Before every ride, check your motorcycle for signs of damage or excessive wear that could pose a danger to you and your passenger. Make sure your tires are properly inflated and your suspension is working properly. If your bike is leaking fluid or has broken parts, do not ride it until it has been repaired.
Assume drivers around you cannot see you, leaving plenty of room to react should they brake suddenly or swerve in front of you. Many drivers prefer to ride in the farthest lane on the left, leaving them one unobstructed side. In most states, riding in the space between two lanes is illegal. Confirm your state’s laws about splitting lanes before you take to the road. Adjust your speed and distance in bad weather.
When riding, your clothes should be snug to the body. Avoid clothing and shoes that may slip off. Every rider should wear gloves to protect their hands and increase their grip. Light, bright clothing with reflective elements is the best way to increase your visibility to other riders, drivers, and pedestrians – especially at night or in poor weather.
The South Jersey motorcycle accident lawyers at Folkman Law Offices, P.C. work tirelessly to recover compensation for your injuries that you deserve. We represent clients throughout South Jersey and the greater Philadelphia area from our offices in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, Philadelphia, and King of Prussia, Pennsylvania. Contact us online or call us at 856-354-9444 for a free consultation.