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Safe Riding Tips for Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month

Staying safe on the roadway while operating a motorcycle can improve to be challenging, particularly when dealing with the actions of other drivers on the roadway. However, motorcyclists in Texas can take various steps to help increase their safety on the roadways, even in the face of hazards posed by other drivers or even the roadway itself.

May is motorcycle safety month, so this is a good time to review some basic safe riding tips for motorcyclists. Whether you have extensive experience riding or are just starting your riding career, these tips can serve as a good reminder for roadway safety. If a collision does occur, be sure to see a doctor right away and speak to a motorcycle accident attorney in Houston to discuss the details of your legal case.

Visibility is Key

Over and over again, one of the best pieces of advice we always see from motorcyclists is to remain visible.

  • Wear Bright or Reflective Clothing. Enhancing visibility is crucial. Opt for bright or reflective gear that makes you stand out during the day and night.
  • Use Reflective Tape. Apply reflective tape on your bike, particularly on the sides, to increase your visibility to other road users.

Gear Up for Safety

The good news about cycle safety gear is that even the really safe items look pretty good now. Motorcyclists don’t have to worry about having their style encroached upon if they want to stay safe.

  • Wear a DOT-approved Helmet. The most critical piece of safety gear is your helmet. Ensure it’s DOT-approved and fits properly.
  • Protective Clothing. Wear long sleeves, gloves, pants, and over-the-ankle footwear, even in warm weather, to protect against road rash.

Ride Defensively

Defensive driving and riding is such an important aspect of vehicle operation, no matter what type of vehicle you are in or on.

  • Assume You’re Invisible. Always ride with the mindset that other drivers can’t see you. This means anticipating potential dangers and staying out of drivers’ blind spots.
  • Keep a Safe Distance. Maintain a safe following distance from the vehicle in front of you. It gives you more time to react and more space to stop.

Stay Alert

Part of defensive driving tactics is staying alert at all times, and not just for other vehicles.

  • Avoid Riding in Bad Weather. If possible, avoid riding during adverse weather conditions. Wet roads and high winds can make riding more dangerous.
  • Watch for Road Hazards. Potholes, gravel, and debris can be more hazardous for motorcyclists than for drivers of cars. Stay vigilant and slow down when navigating through them.

Advanced Precautions

It goes without saying that operating while impaired should never occur. Never ride under the influence of alcohol or drugs. They impair your ability to react and make safe judgments.

Additionally, individuals can increase their chances of remaining safe and accident free on the roadway by taking a motorcycle safety course. A course from an approved school can offer new insights and techniques for safe riding.

Unique Safety Tips

As we wrap up reviewing motorcycle safety tips, we want to mention some final tips, including a maneuver you may not have heard about:

  • Use the ‘SMIDSY’ Maneuver. The SMIDSY (Sorry Mate, I Didn’t See You) maneuver involves slight back-and-forth movements within your lane as you approach intersections or vehicles. This movement catches the eye of other drivers better than simply approaching in a straight line.
  • Monitor Your Mental and Physical State. Long rides can lead to fatigue, which in turn can decrease your reaction time. Take regular breaks and stay hydrated to keep your focus sharp.
  • Practice Emergency Maneuvers. In a controlled environment, practice braking quickly and safely, as well as swerving to avoid obstacles. This can prepare you for unexpected situations on the road.

As we observe Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, we can all commit to making our roadways safer for everyone, including motorcyclists and other motorists on the roadway. Safety is not just about protecting yourself. It’s about contributing to a safer environment for all Texas motorists.

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