Whether you ride your motorcycle just for fun on the weekends or it is your main mode of transportation, one thing remains the same. The need to be safe. The biggest danger facing any motorcyclist are other vehicles. The drivers of these vehicles have a tendency not to see motorcycles. Each year too many motorcyclists are seriously injured or killed in collisions with automobiles whose drivers claim to have never seen the motorcyclist. This is true in part, because drivers of cars and trucks are trained to look for other cars and trucks. This makes it is especially dangerous for motorcyclists, when in heavy traffic. If you are riding your motorcycle in city traffic or on congested roadways, you need to be smart. The following tips can help you safely navigate heavy traffic:
- Position yourself so you are visible to motorists: Many times after an accident with a motorcycle, a driver of a car will report that he or she “did not see” the motorcycle. Is this person lying? Most likely, no. Some recent medical studies are showing that the brain may not perceive motorcycles as they do cars and trucks, due to their smaller size. While brightly colored helmets and reflective jackets can help, they are by far not your best defense. The best thing any motorcyclist can do to be more visible to other motorists, is to position themselves correctly. This includes avoiding driving in another vehicle’s blind spots or adjacent to another vehicle. A motorcyclist is best if he or she can position themselves in front of another driver’s line of vision. This way, if the driver forgets to check his or her blind spots or changes lanes without signaling, he or she can do so without hitting the motorcyclist.
- Maintain a safe following distance: A safe following distance is the distance a motorcyclist should keep between him or herself and the vehicle in front of them. The longer the following distance, the longer the motorcyclist has to react to the situation in front of him or her. The greater following distance also helps the motorcyclist to be more visible to oncoming traffic. A four second following distance is best, while a two second distance is considered the bare minimum.
- Always have an escape lane: When riding in heavy traffic it is important for a motorcyclist to always have an escape route planned to avoid becoming sandwiched between two cars. If you think the car behind you is not slowing down in time to avoid hitting you, flash your brake lights and be prepared to make an escape.
- Pick the best travel route: If you know you will be riding during a particularly busy time of day, take some time and plan your route. Sometimes the shortest route is not always the best route. You may find a route that is slightly longer, but can result in a lot less hassle. This does not mean however, that a less busy side street should be treated like a walk in the park. A neighborhood street can just as easily result in a close call. A motorcyclist must always be on guard.
If you were seriously injured in a motorcycle collision then you need a skilled and compassionate Oklahoma Motorcycle Attorneys who understand motorcycle injury law. At The Handley Law Center our experienced team of litigators have helped countless motorcycle injury victims obtain the compensation they deserve. Only an accomplished Oklahoma Personal Injury Attorney who is well-versed in motorcycle injury law can help properly defend your rights. To schedule a free and confidential consultation with one of our seasoned injury attorneys contact The Handley Law Center at (405) 295-1924. You can trust our team of injury professionals to provide you with aggressive representation.