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This post was last updated on October 15th, 2019 at 06:59 am
GUEST POST- LAURA KNIGHT
If you have ever ridden a motorcycle then you will agree that they are more fun and fuel efficient. What’s good about motorcycles is that you don’t need to go fast to have enough fun. However, despite being more exciting than driving a car, it is very dangerous. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), a crash as a motorcyclist is about 30 times more likely to be fatal as a motorist. Despite this, there are a lot of experienced motorcycle travelers who are able to stay away from accidents thanks to following some simple motorcycle safety practices. If you own a motorcycle and are planning to go on a road trip, here are tips for a safe solo ride.
Inform your friends and family
When you are planning to go on a road trip to a place that you are unfamiliar with, it is advisable to inform your friends and family of it. Give them an idea of the places that you will end up every day and the time that you will be checking in to give them a sense of peace. This way, you will have someone to check up on you when you don’t check in after a reasonable amount of time.
Inspect your ride
One of the most important traveling tip before hitting the road is to give your bike a once over. Some of the things that you should check include the tire pressure, lights, and mirrors. You can also take a quick walk around to see if there are any loose bolts or any other potential hazards.
Always wear the right gear
Remember to wear gear that will protect you from wind chill and debris in case you slide. Instead of wearing a t-shirt and sandals, go for a leather jacket and include gloves, motorcycle boots, full pants, and over the ankle footwear. Since most drivers who hit motorbike riders claim they did not see them, you should choose gears that are bright in color. You should also not rely much on the bikes eyeglasses or windscreen and consider carrying with you a motorcycle helmet visor or goggles. Always wear earplugs to not only protect your hearing but also reduce fatigue.
Avoid bad weather
When driving a motorbike, your body is more exposed to the outside since you lack a windshield. Since you also lack the stability of a car, driving in bad weather like on wet or icy roads becomes very dangerous. Since a motorcycle also has much less traction compared to a car, you should also be on the lookout for sand and gravel and avoid driving over it.
Use technology to regulate your body temperature
Due to the advancement in technology, there has been emergence of cooling and warming technologies for riders. This ranges from lightweight base layers of merino wool for providing warmth to coolmax underwear for keeping moisture away from the skin. If you need to stay cool during he summers, you can also consider electric vests.
According to a study by the University of South Florida’s Center for Urban Transportation Research on the collisions involving motorcycle and car drivers, car drivers were at fault 60 percent of the time. It is, therefore, important when solo riding to keep an eye on the cars that keep changing lanes or pulling out from side streets especially now that people like texting while behind the wheel. Since there are also objects that a car may easily straddle than a motorbike, you should also keep a safe following distance so you have enough time in case one appears.
If you do not drink enough water in a day, you should change that when using a motorbike. When you are dehydrated, it makes you be fatigue and soon you will start feeling nausea, headache, and muscle pain. Don’t wait until you are thirsty for you to drink water because it will be already too late. Therefore, always remember to bring enough water with you.
Make your emergency contact and medical information easily available
Finally, remember to carry a small pouch with you including a form with relevant information and stick it on the snowmobile helmet where people can be able to see it. This way, if for any reason you become unable to speak, the people around will easily know your medical conditions and the right people to call.
Over the past 10 years, Laura Knight has been a motorcycle rider. She has built up an incredible passion for travelling by motorbike and always wishes to contribute to motorcyclist and traveler community. This is the reason why she created MotorManner.com where her passion is turned into useful and interesting information to the motorcyclists and travel lovers. Visit her blog to read more articles about motorcycle traveling gear reviews and helpful tips!