Every time you get behind the wheel, you play a significant role in road safety. When sharing the road with motorcyclists, this role becomes even more critical. According to Forbes, motorcycle drivers are 28 times more likely to die in a severe car crash than other motor drivers. Therefore, understanding how to coexist with motorcycles on the road can make a significant difference.
By adopting certain driving practices and habits, you can contribute to a safer environment for all road users. Your conscious efforts not only help prevent accidents but also foster mutual respect between drivers and motorcyclists.
Sharing the road with motorcyclists
Even though motorcycles are smaller than cars, they have the same right to the full width of a lane. Respect their space and avoid sharing lanes with motorcyclists. Also, remember to double-check your mirrors and blind spots before changing lanes or making turns, as motorcycles can be harder to see.
Predicting motorcycle movements
Motorcyclists often maneuver differently than cars. Be aware that a motorcycle’s lean does not necessarily indicate a turn. To increase safety, do not rely solely on the bike’s body language, but rather look for turn signals.
When the weather is bad or during nighttime, it can be difficult to see motorcyclists. Enhance your visibility by using high beams at night, when appropriate. Always signal your intentions well in advance to provide motorcyclists with ample time to react.
Maintaining a safe following distance
A safe following distance is imperative when driving behind a motorcycle. Motorcycles can stop more quickly than cars, and you need to provide adequate space to stop safely. A good rule of thumb is to leave a three to four-second gap.
Keep your focus solely on the road. Distracted driving increases the risk of accidents significantly. Make a conscious effort to put away your phone, avoid adjusting your radio or GPS while driving and keep your eyes on the road at all times.
Every driver shares the responsibility of making roads safer for all users. It only takes small adjustments in your driving habits to make a substantial difference in road safety.