While motorcycles are a quick and convenient way to travel, the risk of a collision is much higher. In fact, according to a recent Forbes article, traffic accidents result in fatalities a whopping 28 times more often for motorcyclists than for motorists driving passenger vehicles. Sadly, almost 5,000 motorcyclists were killed in traffic collisions in 2017 alone.
These motorcycle traffic fatalities were the result of many factors, including:
- Distraction (on the part of the motorcyclist or driver of the passenger vehicle
- An aging motorcycle-riding population
- Inexperienced motorcyclists
- Reckless driving
- Poor weather conditions
- Poor roadway construction
The reality is that when a motorcyclist is hit by a vehicle, there are no protections afforded like those found in passenger vehicles, like a metal and glass “cage,” airbags and safety belts.
Preventing Motorcycle Accidents is the Goal
To avoid motorcycle accidents, consider the following:
- Be Alert – Focus on your motorcycle riding skills, as well as on all drivers around you. A car that stops unexpectedly, changes lanes, backs out without looking, or makes a left-hand turn without recognizing an oncoming motorcyclist are all potential hazards you may have to avoid.
- Assume Other Drivers Can’t See You – To avoid the hazards listed above, always assume that the drivers of vehicles cannot see you. You may be located in a blind spot, or the driver may subconsciously only “see” other cars and trucks. Be prudent. It just may save your life.
- Focus on Where the Wheel Pivots – If there is a vehicle directly in front of you, pay careful attention to where the wheel pivots. This will help you recognize a sudden lane change or an unexpected left-hand turn.
- Keep a Watchful Eye on Your “Path” – Motorcycle accidents are often the result of hazards in the road, such as rocks, oil spills, and potholes. While these hazards typically result in nothing more than a bump for a car or truck, they could potentially be deadly for a motorcyclist.
- Keep a Close Eye on Your Motorcycle’s Mirrors – Always pay attention to what is happening behind you. There may be a car getting dangerously close, or blinkers signaling an upcoming merge.
- Judge Your Distance – Learn how to judge “safe” distances, so there’s a buffer zone between you and other drivers.
- Avoid Lane-Splitting – If a driver decides to merge while you are between vehicles, you could be crushed.
- Keep Your Hands on the Brakes – Keep your hands over the front and rear brakes so that you can stop immediately, if necessary. Before riding in traffic, take some time to practice your braking skills in an empty parking lot.
- Pay Attention to the Speed Limit – Can you go faster on a motorcycle? Yes. But just because you can doesn’t mean that you should. When you travel faster than the posted speed limit, your turning capabilities are severely inhibited. Driving your motorcycle too fast can also prevent you from avoiding another driver, a person, an animal or a road hazard.
- Keep Up on Maintenance – Check your brakes on a regular basis, routinely change your oil, and make sure your tires are in good condition. If you hear an odd noise, get your motorcycle to a mechanic immediately.
Have You Been Injured in a New Jersey Motorcycle Accident?
Motorcycle accidents are often catastrophic and can result in serious and permanent disability. Motorcyclists injured in accidents need a law firm on their side that will aggressively fight for their rights to compensation after a serious motorcycle accident. At Rosner Law Offices, P.C. our attorneys understand the difficulties motorcyclists face after an accident, which is why we offer compassionate, yet tenacious representation every step of the way. Contact us today at (856) 238-5724 today to schedule your free initial case evaluation.