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Do Motorcycles Increase a Driver’s Risk on the Road?

Motorcycle enthusiasts in California are getting back on the road in huge numbers now that the warmer weather has hit. Road rallies, weekend rides and other events are further encouraging more of them to get on the road. Unfortunately for automobile drivers, the increase in motorcycle traffic also means greater risk of being involved in an accident with a motorcycle.

Close-up of the front of the motorcycle destroyed the distorted wheel of a serious accident until the driver died.

The Most Vulnerable Drivers on the Road

There’s nothing like the open road for motorcyclists, but these two- and sometimes three-wheeled vehicles have inherent risks that can increase the likelihood and severity of accident injuries sustained from other vehicles:

  • Less road contact and fewer wheels decrease the stability of motorcycles compared to the balance of four-wheeled trucks and cars.
  • Susceptibility to high winds and other weather conditions, such as rain, can cause motorcyclists to lose control and possibly swerve into traffic.
  • Unexpected debris, animals, potholes, or even heaves and dips in the pavement can also contribute to a loss of control.
  • Limited protection to the motorcycle rider means his exposure to the impact of an accident is greater, meaning more serious injuries and increased chances of catastrophic consequences.

How Drivers Can Avoid a Motorcycle Accident

To avoid an accident with a motorcycle, normal driving precautions, such as paying attention to the road, not driving when you are tired, and following the speed limit, provide a basic guideline for safety. However, there are additional things you can do as a vehicle driver to avoid a motorcycle accident, such as:

  • Increasing the following distance between your vehicle and the motorcycle ahead of you.
  • Checking your blind spots before changing lanes.
  • Avoiding distractions as motorcycles can maneuver easily, and suddenly appear near you.

At the same time, motorcycle riders can also take precautions to avoid a motorcycle accident with a vehicle by:

  • Getting trained to ride a motorcycle through a certified driving course.
  • Operating a motorcycle only when alert.
  • Taking the motorcycle out when the weather and road conditions make it safe to do so.
  • Wearing a helmet and proper clothing, and avoiding clothing that can be caught in the clutch, the braking mechanism or the tailpipe.
  • Increasing visibility by wearing bright colors.
  • Driving defensively, taking into consideration that other drivers may not see them.

If you or any family member is involved in an accident with a motorcycle, contact Dunnion Law. We have experienced and trusted motorcycle injury attorneys that can help.