Every biker should know this saying: dress for the slide, not the ride. Motorbike accidents are notorious for causing some of the worst injuries seen by paramedics, but there are things you can do to mitigate the risk. Statistics showed that in 2006 in the USA, motorcyclists were 35 time more likely to suffer a fatal crash than drivers of cars – primarily because a car offers much more protection than a bike. By following some ground rules you can improve your chances of staying in one piece.
1. Wear a helmet
You only need to look at a helmet that’s been damaged in an accident to see how wearing one can prevent you from sustaining catastrophic injuries to your head and face. Get a full face helmet, as one without that protection can leave you vulnerable to injuring your lower face, especially at speed. Helmets should be snug but not uncomfortable – ask for advice when you’re buying one to get the best fit.
2. ATGATT – All the gear, all the time
Common injuries from motorbike crashes include road rash and degloving. Degloving is similar to road rash but can be much more severe; it is the result of skin and superficial tissue being stripped off the body and can result in death, especially when sustained on the head or torso.
The proper gear to wear on a motorcycle is designed to protect you from such injuries and many others. Helmet, high-quality leather or textile jacket, abrasion-resistant pants, non-slip boots and abrasion-resistant gloves that cover your entire hands are non-negotiable. Body armour specifically for motorbikes can save lives and is therefore strongly recommended.
3. Defensive driving
There seems to be a constant war between four-wheeled vehicles and two-wheeled ones – often both drivers will insist that they’re in the right. In the moment though, it doesn’t matter who’s in the right, because that doesn’t protect you from a crash. Even if you’re surrounded by terrible drivers, your safety is more important than trying to force them to do better. Always, always stay below the speed limit, check your mirrors and assume that people cannot see you.
4. Make yourself noticeable
If you accept that other drivers can’t see you then it makes sense to make yourself more visible with what you wear. Some motorcycle gear (jackets, pants etc.) come with built in reflective strips, but if they don’t make sure to get some. Check your lights regularly to make sure they’re working, they should be as bright as the games at https://www.blacklotuscasino.com/.
5. Stick to what you know
Of course you won’t always be able to ride on familiar roads, but stay sensible when you’re in a strange area: don’t drive blindly and be aware of other vehicles if you slow down to get your bearings.
All The Vigilance All The Time
As with driving any vehicle, a lot of staying safe on a bike is about being aware and cautious. A motorbike can be a dangerous machine and it can take a millisecond lapse attention to catapult you into disaster.