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Motorcycle Safety Tips

Staying safe while you drive a motorcycle is not the same as driving a car. Check out the top 4 tips to know while riding a motorcycle.

Staying safe while you drive a motorcycle is not the same as trying to stay safe while driving a car, truck or other enclosed automobile. There are a whole new set of rules and risks that need to be considered when you practice motorcycle safety.

1. Conduct a safety check before you ride: Don’t take for granted that your bike is in perfect working order. Check to make sure your front and back lights are working and responsive (in the case of directionals and brake lights), check your tires for pressure, tread and puncture issues, make sure none of your spokes are bent or missing, look for fraying cables, leaks or cracks in hoses and broken or bent pedals. Finally, make sure your throttle is working properly.

2. Wear a helmet and eye protection: Many states don’t have helmet laws, but that doesn’t mean it’s actually safe to tool around on your bike without a helmet. Helmets are vital in preventing fatal head injuries and the one you choose needs to have a sticker that shows it meets impact standards set by the Department of Transportation. Since motorcycle windshields do little to protect your eyes from dirt and debris, make sure your helmet provides eye protection or that you choose goggles. To find out if your state requires helmets, check out this link: http://www.iii.org/issues_updates/motorcycle-crashes.html.

3. Avoid speeding: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported in 2008 that speeding was involved in 35 percent of all fatal motorcycle crashes. Speeding is a really easy thing to avoid—and doing so just might save your life. Also watch the side of the street for signs that indicate a reduction in speed limit, since that often indicates an area you really need to be careful in.

4. Invest in antilock brakes: The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reported in 2010 that motorcycles fitted with antilock brakes had a 37 percent less chance of being involved in a fatal crash than those without.

Remember, for the most part, motorcycle safety is perfectly controllable. While you may not be able to predict the action of other drivers on the roads, you can control your own and keep your bike in good working order

For your free informational guide to buying motorcycle insurance and making sure you are getting the best value, go to www.facebook.com/RiveraAgency and click on the tab for Free Tips. Don't have facebook? Call us at 516-883-6100 and we can mail you a copy for FREE!

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

TheGreek July 10, 2012 at 10:38 PM
The most important safety item is you. At a minimum take the Basic Rider Course givin by the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. Besides hot rodding your defensive riding skills, there are insurance discounts to be had for completing the course, and some states will even waive the road test. http://msf-usa.org/index_new.cfm?spl=2&action=display&pagename=RiderCourse%20Info
Al Cinamon July 19, 2012 at 12:42 AM
Here's a safety tip. Stay in your own lane. Who taught you that because your vehicle is "skinny" you can create your own lane between car lanes. Riding between cars is dangerous and illegal. One more thing. If you heed this advice and stay in lane you should learn about "tracking." That means riding in the tracks made by the wheels of cars. Riding in the center of the lane (between the tracks) is a slippery place to be because of the oil that seeps out of cars especially when it rains.
George Mulligan July 19, 2012 at 01:01 AM
I agree with Al Cinamon. Many motorcycle riders ride between lanes when traffic is backed up and travel at excesive speed at other times. To my mind these motorcycle riders are accidents ready to happen.
Rich July 19, 2012 at 02:21 AM
I have a question for any motorcycle riders who are reading this. I have wanted to get a motorcycle for a while now, to save money on gas. The problem is, I have 2 herniated discs in my lower back that act up on me. Because of this, a street bike is off the table, since the riding position for them is bent down. So my question is, how does your back hold up riding a "Harley-style" motorcycle. I would love to hear from anyone who rides and has had back problems. I would love to get a bike, but there is not much point to getting one if I can't ride it without killing my back.
paul July 19, 2012 at 02:51 AM
To Al Cinamon: Any relation to Sy and Mae???

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