Staying visible is the key to staying safe while riding a motorcycle. But unfortunately, remaining visible at all times is much harder than it seems. Motorcycles are significantly smaller than passenger vehicles, so they're more difficult to spot on the road. How can you protect yourself? Follow these five tips to remain visible while riding:
Use Reflective Tape
Placing reflective tape on your motorcycle is perhaps the simplest and most inexpensive way to increase your visibility. This tape won't necessarily help during the daytime, but it will make you more visible at night. Maximize your visibility by placing the reflective tape on your wheel rims, forks, and any other part of your bike that tends to catch the light.
Tap the Brakes
The brake lights are designed to alert the people behind you that you are stopping, but they can also be used to increase your visibility. If the driver behind you does not seem to be paying attention, tap your brakes multiple times. The bright, blinking lights will grab the driver's attention and ensure he knows you're there. Be sure there is plenty of room between your motorcycle and the car behind you before tapping on the brakes. If the driver is tailgating, he could crash into you when you tap on the brakes.
Frequently Change Positions Within the Lane
Motorcycle riding instructors often advise their students to frequently change positionswithin their lane when riding in heavy traffic. Basically, this means motorcyclists should move back and forth between the right and left side of the lane. Why? A moving motorcyclist will attract the attention of other drivers on the road and help the motorcyclist remain visible to drivers in all four directions. If you're stuck in heavy traffic, safely shift from side to side to make others aware of your presence.
Add Auxiliary Lights
Auxiliary lights are supplementary lights that can increase visibility at night and in poor weather conditions. These lights are not designed to replace the motorcycle's headlights–in fact, they are supposed to supplement the headlights. If you choose to install auxiliary lights, more light will be emitted from your motorcycle, which makes it easier for other drivers to see you. In addition, studies have shown that drivers find it easier to judge the distance and speed of a motorcycle that has auxiliary lights than one that does not. Since many accidents occur as a result of these judgment errors, installing auxiliary lights could reduce your risk of getting hit.
Ride in Groups
There's safety in numbers, so consider riding in groups to increase your visibility and stay safe on the road. In general, a group of bikers that are in a tight formation are more visible than bikers that are spaced out. However, it's important to leave a bit of space between each member of the group so each biker has an escape route to use in the event of an emergency. Riding in a group is not easy, but it's one way to stay visible on the road. Be selective when choosing other motorcyclists to ride with. Make sure that the riders within your group are all around the same skill level so no one gets left behind. Have you been seriously injured in a motorcycle accident? If so, seek legal representation as soon as possible. Let our experienced personal injury attorneys fight to ensure you are fully compensated for your injuries. Schedule a free consultation with attorney George Tait at Utah Bike Law by calling 801-487-6454 or visiting us online today.