From the article: How to be Seen on Motorcycles
There are city, state, and nationally imposed rules... but there are also personal ones, guidelines we decide upon and enact every time we climb aboard a motorcycle. What are your rules for riding? Share them here!
- Drive defensively, wear high-visibility protective gear. ALWAYS! You will enjoy falling off more, if you are dressed for the occasion...
- I took my clue from oversized loads in Europe: they must sport a red flag in the back to get attention. I have three flags in back of my bike to increase visibility: beer mug on red ground, a German flag, and a Hessian flag. Why not a US-American flag? It doesn't call for attention because everyone sports one.
- —Guest Reinhold Schlieper
- hi fellow riders, if you have ever been struck by another motorist, and later asked yourself how could I have done anything better to avoid being hit, the answer is most likely nothing, on the rare occasion that your mind wanders while riding, you do have a crisis of responsibilty to yourself, where car drivers have the luxury of not caring, bike riders need 120% of their attention put into the job at hand. That my friends is the only way to avoid being another statistic, keep yourself actively avoiding potential threats, keep yourself in the visability zone that other drivers have to see you in, don't let your mind wander off the task at hand. If you are like me and have a plague of cyclists invading your local roads at the weekend, what is it that makes them stand out enough that you think they are safer than the rest, they wear bright clothes, they stay in single file, they keep away from the traffic lanes as much as practical. It's a very simple formula, but it's kept my skin on.
- —Guest bucky69
- 1 Wear a helmet 2 If you have a passenger on back, they wear a helmet 3 Your level of safety gear must be less than or equal to the passenger 4 Passenger must be of opposite sex*, your own child, or immediate family** *chick on chick riding is allowed ** only for short distances or emergency 5 Never trailer a working motorcycle 6 If you can’t pick it up, you can’t ride it 7 No riding in large obnoxious groups (5 is pushing it) 8 No Flip flops, shorts, or any other nonsense 9 No radio 10 Have Fun
- —Guest Joe
Smell the roses
- I'm 70 and ride a road sofa (Road King). While it is very comfortable, I am a much more alert and involved rider if I stop every 60 minutes or 70 miles, I get off the bike, open or remove my helmet, pull out the water bottle and a chew of jerky, walk around the bike and maybe clean a bug off the windshield or my visor or take a picture. I'm back on the road in 4-5 miutes tops with a fresh brain & butt (they really are connected!) While the stop costs me about 6 miles @ 70 mph, I'm able to put in a 5-6 hour day and still enjoy my dinner. I am basically following the #1 elder rule, "Never pass up a chance to use a restroom"; the pause that refreshes. Good riding!
- —Guest Redpawdave
Some Bad Advice
- High Beam headlight use is a poor recommendation. It can blind and annoy other motorists, but even more importantly, it makes it more difficult for them to accurate judge your speed and distance. It can also wash out your turn signals. Bad advice. Headlights are good. Highbeams do not increase daytime safety. Also, showing a helmetless rider using hand signals indicates that you aren't thinking this through. Better by far to keep your hands on the controls and use the blinkers. The hand signal crowd does not use them in addition to the blinkers, and having the hand off the grip makes using the clutch and horn and blinkers much more difficult. Modulaters have arguable effectiveness. Causing those around you do drive distracted and/or target fixate on you may not be the brilliant idea that it first appears to be.
- —Guest No Thanks
Rules to Ride By
- Equipment: Install extra lights on rear of bike for multiple riding and brake lights;replace tires more frequently than recommended; Attitude: do not ride when tired; at least a few times a year, go to remote area and practice panic stops, especially locking up rear wheel and hard stop with front brake. Extra care when left turning and opposite traffic driving into sun. Never linger close to trailer trucks, either back off or pass.
- —Guest Rick
This mindset keeps me alive.
- What I have found to be the most useful is to expect every driver I encounter or see ahead of me is to expect them to do the stupidest and most dangerous move they could possibly make. Of course this works just as well when driving a car and I told my friend's 16-year-old driver to use this technique when she started to drive. I've put about 27k miles on my current bike ('06 Ninja 500) and have only had one REALLY close call. This guy decided to pull out from a sidestreet right across my path as I was doing 45 mph. I skidded some but maintained control, popped a U-turn, caught up with him and we had a nice, friendly chat as we drove along. Then I stopped, called the cops and turned him in as a suspected drunk driver. In total I've probably ridden over 250k miles on bikes over the years and I've had two accidents and neither was my fault. Thanks to my mindset I've avoided hundreds of accidents.
- THANKS i like the many rules have read about people , they are really helping us
- —Guest KENNEDY
- in a parking lot in a shut-down plant. check for glass, oil, grouchy security guards first. Then practice S turns, stops, small 8s, left & right turns. On the town street, go mornings 9:30 to 10:30 (after rush hour, before deliverymen & contractors get into their runs)
- —Guest seth
Always be ...
- ...aware of what's around you, ALL the time. know who's who and where, especially at a signal ... never ease up, not paranoia, just aware ...
- —Guest barstowsbaby
- I am always concerned with turning left, waiting on traffic, when there is room on my right side for cars to get around! I try to hog the middle of the road to keep traffic from going around quickly because the cars behind the first one may not realize you are sitting there waiting to turn!!
- —Guest commonsense
After 30 yrs
- Protective attire, helmet, look over shoulder when swapping lanes, look @ auto rear view mirrors when advancing & passing them, don't ride above your comfort zone on public street.
3 rules to live by
- First-don't trust your mirrors. Turn your head & really look before changing lanes Second-the front brake will stop you much faster than the rear brake Third-if you get hit by a car, it doesn't matter who's at fault, you lose.
- —Guest Rich
- Riding a motorcycle without proper attire is just plain foolish. It's not necessarily a guarantee for not getting injured, but it it can seriously make a difference between mild abrasions and serious injuries and possible fatalities. I am always looking ahead for hazards and behind me as well. I like the 12 second rule. I am constantly reassessing exit strategy plans while riding. I ride within the limit, and assume that cagers cannot see me. Bottom lineis - We must be more alert at all times. And yes, I always pray before a ride, in fact even when I am not riding. These rider opinion polls are great and keep us all aware and ready to share safety tips with fellow riders. May you all get home safe and refreshed.
- —Guest scott
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