There is something about the freedom of riding a motorcycle. The increased maneuverability and responsiveness of the bike compared to a traditional vehicle is an empowering feeling for those who can handle it. Add in the fact that these vehicles are often more fuel efficient than a car, and it can be hard to beat using a motorcycle.
Unfortunately, with increased maneuverability comes a notable downside: exposure to the elements. Aside from dealing with rain and snow, motorcycle riders also lack the protection of walls and airbags that come with sitting inside a vehicle. This means that in the event of an accident, the motorcycle rider is at a higher risk of injury. As a result, motorcycle riders are wise to take a more defensive approach to driving to help reduce the risk of a crash. Additional ways to reduce this risk include:
- Use the right gear. From a properly tuned and maintained bike to the correct helmet, having the right gear can reduce the odds that a malfunction contributes to a crash while also ensuring you have protection in an accident.
- Don’t speed. A recent report by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) notes that a motorcycle rider is likelier to avoid a crash by traveling at a reasonable speed. The faster we go, the less time we have to adjust.
- Use ABS. More and more motorcycles have antilock braking systems (ABS). This system allows the rider to brake without locking up and significantly reduces the risk of a crash. Check to see if your bike has ABS. If not, consider an upgrade.
The report by the IIHS also calls on manufacturers of automatic emergency braking systems to include motorcycle detection. Thus far, federal law does not include this requirement or motorcycle detection for left lane turn assist technology. The inclusion of both could go a long way towards reducing the risk of a tragic motorcycle accident.