QUICK TIPS: General Guidelines For Riding A Motorcycle Safely

Be visible:
 
• Remember that motorists often have trouble seeing motorcycles and reacting in time.
  • Make sure your headlight works and is on day and night.
  • Use reflective strips or decals on your clothing and on your motorcycle.
  • Be aware of the blind spots cars and trucks have.
  • Flash your brake light when you are slowing down and before stopping.
  • If a motorist doesn’t see you, don’t be afraid to use your horn.

 Dress for safety:
 
• Wear a quality helmet and eye protection.
  • Wear bright clothing and a light-colored helmet.
  • Wear leather or other thick, protective clothing.
  • Choose long sleeves and pants, over-the-ankle boots, and gloves.
  • Remember – the only thing between you and the road is your protective  gear.

Apply effective mental strategies:
 
• Constantly search the road for changing conditions. Use MSF’s Search, Evaluate, Execute strategy (SEESM) to increase time and space safety margins.
  • Give yourself space and time to respond to other motorists’ actions.
  • Give other motorists time and space to respond to you.
  • Use lane positioning to be seen; ride in the part of a lane where you are most visible.
  • Watch for turning vehicles.
  • Signal your next move in advance.
  • Avoid weaving between lanes.
  • Pretend you’re invisible, and ride extra defensively.
  • Don’t ride when you are tired or under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.
  • Know and follow the rules of the road, and stick to the speed limit.

 Information from the Motorcycle Safety Foundation web site.

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