Did you know that life insurance is more expensive for motorcyclists than it is for those who don’t ride? There’s a good reason for the price hike: depending on the year, motorcyclists have a fatality rate that’s between 25 and 40 times that of those in passenger vehicles. While those numbers may not deter you from enjoying your favorite pastime, hopefully it will encourage you to strongly consider safety when you do ride, realizing that even small mistakes can easily translate into tragic accidents. According to the National Highway Transportation System Authority (view PDF), many riders that suffer motorcycle fatalities do so as a result of making some basic mistakes, which we’ll summarize in this post.
Failing To Hone Certain Driving Skills
The first skill set any motorist needs to master is defensive driving. No matter how safe and skilled a driver you are, you cannot control the other drivers on the road. You need to be aware of the motorists around you and never assume they will yield when they should do so. As you anticipate problems and traffic patterns, you’ll slow down before you need to potentially stop, decreasing your chances of an abrupt stop — or worse.
In addition to defensive driving skills, motorcyclists need to master braking and cornering skills. Since motorcycles are lighter than passenger vehicles, those who operate them need to take special care in learning how to brake and take corners effectively. About half of motorcycle-vehicle accidents occur near intersections, so those areas require special consideration.
Choosing a Motorcycle That’s Too Big for You
Power — that’s what we always want, right? Well, too much power and too much weight can lead to difficulties. If a bike is too heavy for you, then you will have trouble pushing it or picking it up, when necessary. For inexperienced riders, smaller bikes are better because they’re easier to manage safely. If you’re in the market for your first motorcycle, check out this post from Allstate.
Forgetting Your Limitations
Motorcycles have limitations, and riding one is quite different from driving a passenger motor vehicle. Even if you think you know everything there is to know about riding motorcycles, be certain to still attend a motorcycle training course led by professionals that will equip you with the knowledge and skills needed to safely ride a bike. When you get your bike, you’ll want to make sure to become thoroughly acquainted with its owner’s manual, so you know exactly how to operate and service your own unique vehicle. Regular maintenance is another key to safety that will keep your bike from experiencing more limitations than its status requires.
While it might seem like fun to do what cars can’t do — like weave in and out of stalled traffic — such rude behaviors can frustrate other drivers, prompting them to put you and your bike at risk. If the other bikers are doing it, be the better biker, and just don’t do it.
Be sure to check out Nicholas Agency’s Motorcycle Insurance Coverage.
Motorcycle Safety Series
The Nicholas Insurance Agency, led by Greg Nicholas, is a family owned business serving the York county, Pennsylvania region. In the insurance business since 1981, Greg Nicholas helps families, businesses and individuals understand the value of different insurance products and make wise decisions when selecting the best insurance products for their specific situations.
Offering exclusively Allstate insurance products, the Nicholas Agency provides auto, homeowners, rental and landlord insurance as well as life & disability, recreational vehicle, motorcycle and personal liability insurance.
For more information, visit our two York, PA locations at Westgate Plaza or York Marketplace or call us at (717) 764-2024.
Image credits: Top © Andrey Armyagov; /Fotolia; 2nd © Olympixel/Fotolia; 3rd © oneinchpunch/Fotolia; 4th © tomas/Fotolia.