Warm weather in our area means a host of motorcycle rallies and events. These draw large crowds of local bikers, along with those from out of state. While they present an excellent opportunity to share your passion for riding with other motorcycle enthusiasts, the sheer number of participants and the increase in traffic means a greater risk for motorcycle accidents. To avoid the potentially serious personal injuries that can result from crashes with other bikers and with motor vehicles, we have collected the following tips to help you stay safe.
Know The Risks
While South Carolina offers the perfect weather and terrain for riding a motorcycle, it is important to be aware of the risks. According to the Governor’s Highway Safety Association (GHSA), the Palmetto State ranks among the highest in the nation in terms of the number of motorcycle fatalities. Roughly 200 bikers are killed each year, while thousands more suffer potentially life-threatening injuries.
While it is important to make note of road, traffic, and weather conditions before heading out on a ride, often it is reckless driving behaviors that are to blame for motorcycle accidents. These include:
Speeding and going too fast for conditions
Riding with more than two bikers in a lane
Tailgating other drivers and other aggressive behavior, such as improper passing
Driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or medication
Driving distracted, such as using cell phones, texting, and adjusting stereo stations
Driving without headlights at night, or failing to maintain your bike properly
Motorcycle Safety Tips
Before heading out for a ride, it is important to review South Carolina motorcycle laws, which outline both your rights and responsibilities as a biker. While you do have the right to ride without a helmet if you are over the age of 21, these laws often vary across state lines and in different counties. Along with conforming to legal requirements, wearing a helmet when riding increases your own personal safety and increases injury risks by more than 50 percent.
In addition to wearing a helmet and making sure your motorcycle is properly maintained, Geico recommends the following motorcycle safety tips:
Dress appropriately: Wearing long sleeves and pants can help you avoid road rash in the event of a spill, while covered toe shoes and biker boots can help to protect your feet and ankles.
Hone your riding skills: If you are a new or inexperienced rider, consider a motorcycle safety course. Even if you have been riding for years, a refresher course can help reduce insurance costs.
Ride defensively: When on the road, keep an eye out for vehicles who may not see you and those who may not be aware of the proper precautions to take around bikers.
Get Help Today
Despite your precautions, accidents and injuries can still occur. To help protect yourself and your rights to compensation, contact the Surasky Law Firm, LLC right away. Arrange a consultation with our Aiken, SC motorcycle accident attorney to discuss the options available in your particular case.