Advice for Motorcyclists (a Car and Lorry Driver’s Perspective)

When we talk about cars, lorries and other heavy vehicles vis-à- vis motorcycles, it is primarily a question of safety of all vehicles on the streets. And safety, convenience and comfort of individual riders can only be attained when all bikers, motorists and lorry drivers have an understanding, consideration and respect for each other’s vehicle. Each should have a clear picture of the constraints under which they all have to hit the road.

 

Here are some valuable tips and advices for motorcyclists from fellow car and truck drivers.

 

Leave adequate space with other vehicles

It still remains one of the commonest and biggest mistakes of motorcyclists to not leave sufficient stopping distance in relation to cars and lorries. Yes, motorbikes are definitely smaller in size and lighter in weight than these heavy vehicles and they require lesser time to come to a halt, but they need to give equally generous stopping distance to avoid crashing into these other vehicles in front. So, to keep a safe distance is the best safeguard against avoidable crashes and collisions.

 

Resist aggressiveness and the urge to dominate

Motorcycle riders need alertness and confidence on roads, not hostility. Sometimes they are seen by car drivers as being aggressive and overtaking from the wrong side. Though such assertiveness may be dismissed on the ground that a majority of motorcycle riders are young people, it is good to realize that they can’t possibly dominate cars and lorries. They should never disregard traffic lanes for safety’s sake.

 

Let your motorcycles be visible and heard

It’s not good for motorcyclists to assume anything when it comes to their visibility to cars and trucks. Be extra cautious to ensure that your motorcycle doesn’t fall in the blind spots of bigger vehicles. Look twice before coming out of your driveway or before taking a turn at intersections. Though the loud-sounding exhaust systems of motorbikes may draw the attention of other drivers, one cannot always depend on it since sometimes even this sound cannot be overhead. Never assume that every drive will spot you instantly no matter how you weave in and out of traffic. It helps to use your daytime and night-time lights timely and dress up your bikes with chromes for enhanced visibility.

 

Know the state of the atmosphere

Endowed with only two wheels, motorcycles come with less traction than let’s say a car. So, it is helpful to ride according to the weather condition. Rainy or foggy weather makes it extremely difficult and risky for bike riders to make trips. With no windshield or wipers, a motorcyclist’s visibility can be compromised in such weather conditions and render bike riding unstable. If possible, give ample time for the rain or fog to clear. If at all you need to venture out immediately, do it cautiously. Zero visibility or slippery pavements can put not only motorcyclists but also users of large vehicles in danger.

 

Enlighten your pillion riders

Apart from how a motorcyclist behaves on the road, a passenger on such vehicles has a paramount role to play in the overall safety of themselves as well as other riders sharing the same lane. Bike riders should not only equip their passengers with the right protective gears like helmets, but also take them into consideration while maneuvering and negotiating curves. This is because sometimes uncooperative passengers can spell risks for everybody on the road. Educate the person/persons that you tag along in your motorcycle. Beware of age restriction in place for pillion passengers in your state.

 

Follow a staggered formation of movement

While every vehicle is entitled to full lane of traffic, it is advisable for a motorcyclist not to ride in parallel with any other vehicle. This is so because the other vehicle may swerve sideways anytime to avoid a pothole, another vehicle that stops suddenly in front of them without warning, or just random objects and this may lead to collision. Unless you are coming to a stop sign, parallel lane sharing should be avoided. A staggered formation gives motorcyclists a bigger room for last-minute maneuvering.

 

As we just saw above, sharing every inch of a road safely among all drivers is critical. Thus, for safe driving it is essential for motorcyclists to take their own limitations into account. They must possess driving skills that make allowance for not only how they view themselves but also how cars and trucks anticipate and view their motorcycles. Only then, it will be a happy ride for all forms and classes of vehicles.

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