Tips on Riding
• Never ride your motorcycle without your helmet. Make sure it fits securely and has a DOT label, which symbolizes compliance with federal safety standards.
• Take a motorcycle rider-training class.
• Know the limitations of your motorcycle.
• Don't speed.
• Never tailgate other vehicles.
• Use your signals. Learn the hand signals for turning, stopping and slowing down just in case your bike's signals ever malfunction.
• Respect other drivers. Avoid weaving through traffic and driving on the shoulder.
• Be visible. Be visible. Be visible.
• Avoid riding in blind spots and always use your headlights.
• Brake safely. Use both brakes at the same time.
Before You Hit The Road Checklist
• Test your lights, brakes, turn signals and horn.
• Check the oil and fuel levels.
• Check tires for any punctures or slick spots.
• Make sure your mirrors are positioned correctly.
• Make sure your cables are not worn or frayed.
• Lubricate and adjust the chain as recommended by the manufacturer.
What To Wear
• Protective Eyewear. Find a high quality helmet with a face shield, goggles or glasses with plastic/safety lens so you can always see the road clearly.
• Jacket and Pants. Wear safe, durable materials including leather or synthetics that are full length and fit to size. Color is also important. Vibrant colors and reflective materials are more easily seen on the road.
• Gloves. Choose durable, non-slip leather gloves that fit your hands well.
• Shoes. Wear leather boots or durable sneakers that cover your ankles.
Common Motorcycle Accidents
• Other motorists not seeing you. You're smaller than they are, and you're twenty-seven times more likely to die in a collision than they are. So be visible.
• Potholes. You can curse bad roadways all you want, but in the end, it's up to you to avoid obstacles in your way.
• Speeding. Sure, it's fun to rip down the road. But every mile an hour over the speed limit you go increases the odds of an ugly outcome.
• Inexperience. Know the limitations of your bike before you get out there with the big boys. Rush hour is not the time to learn that you don't know what you're doing.
• Over braking. If you lock up your front wheel when braking, you've just sacrificed your ability to steer. Hopefully, that'll be the only thing you sacrifice.
• Running wide on a turn. Obvious, really. The road is the safest place to be. The shoulder is where telephone poles, mailboxes and little white crosses live.
Motorcycle Safety Foundation
You can always get more information on motorcycle riding safety tips, state laws and course information.
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