The mild winters that many parts of the U.S. experienced this past winter may have already allowed motorcyclists to get in a few good rides. With springtime occurring in full force and summer just on the horizon, however, the roads will soon be full of all types of mopeds, scooters and motorcycles.
Now is a good time for all riders to review and practice safe operation of their two-wheeled motor vehicles.
More than 60 percent of accidents with motorcycles, mopeds and scooters also involve another type of motor vehicle. This is a scary prospect considering there are so few physical protections when riding. Wearing appropriate clothing and gear, however, can lessen the chances for severe injuries during minor accidents. Motorcycle helmets, protective or reflective jackets and pants, leather gloves and goggles or masks are all a must when riding.
To increase both confidence and awareness on the road, avid bikers should attend local rider courses, either for the first time or as review. These courses typically include defensive riding practices and other tips for safe riding, as well as how to take bikes down during emergency situations.
Knowing how to ride defensively can save a rider's life, because all too often drivers of passenger cars and other larger vehicles fail to see motorcycles and pull out in front of or merge into them. Riders have to be more focused on and attentive to other vehicles around them. Also being aware of the best practices for riding under certain weather or environmental conditions is important. Conditions like heavy rains, gusty winds, sand-or gravel-covered roads, potholes and curvy terrain can cause unique challenges and dangers for riders of two-wheeled motor vehicles.
The time is also ripe for drivers of cars, trucks and other vehicles to remember how to share the roads with bikers.
Look for more motorcycles and other two-wheeled motor vehicles on the roads during warmer months and give riders the same respect and right-of-way privileges as other vehicles on the road. Pay particular attention for motorcycles at intersections or when changing lanes on highways, as these are when most accidents with bikes occur. Also remember to increase your stopping distance around these vulnerable vehicles, which creates a safer zone in which riders can maneuver as needed.
Both riders and drivers should avoid drinking alcohol and then operating their vehicles to further prevent unnecessary motorcycle accidents, injuries and deaths.
If you or your loved one was recently in a moped, scooter or motorcycle accident, contact a California personal injury attorney as soon as possible to discuss your legal rights and options. A lawyer with experience litigating motorcycle crashes may be able to help you receive compensation for your injuries.
Source: Green Bay Press Gazette, "Safety first: Play nice with motorcycles," 4/16/12.
While this website provides general information, it does not constitute legal advice. The best way to get guidance on your specific legal issue is to contact a lawyer. To schedule a meeting with the attorney, please call at 408-293-7777 or complete the intake form below.