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Motorcycle safety: The basics and beyond

May 20, 2024 | Motorcycle Accidents

Summer in California brings an increase in motorcycle traffic as riders take advantage of the warmer weather. It’s a great time to be on two wheels, but it’s also when safety becomes even more critical.

As such, now is the perfect time to brush up on safety practices that can protect you, your fellow riders and everyone on the road.

Essential motorcycle safety basics

Before you ever get on a bike, be sure you understand and abide by the state’s specific motorcycle rules and regulations. These include:

  • Securing the proper license: In California, this means obtaining a Class M1 or M2 motorcycle license.
  • Demonstrating skills: You must demonstrate your ability to properly inspect and operate a motorcycle.
  • Understanding California’s motorcycle laws: Be sure you know the rules for things like lane splitting, mandatory helmet use and group riding

Recognizing and complying with these fundamental responsibilities is essential for a safe ride and can prevent serious motorcycle accidents and injuries.

Safety tips for everyone

Whether you are about to head out for the first time or you are a seasoned rider, safety must be your top priority. Every rider would be wise to:

  • Gear up smartly. Invest in safety gear. Choose riding attire that serves as your second skin; it should be protective yet comfortable.
  • Stay visible. Use reflective tape on your bike and gear, especially if you ride at night or during foggy mornings along the coast.
  • Ride sober and alert. Fatigue and even small amounts of alcohol or drugs can impair your riding. Do not ride if you are too tired or under the influence of substances.
  • Master advanced riding courses. Sharpen your skills with courses that go beyond the basics. They can teach you how to handle your bike in unexpected situations.

Incorporating these tips into every ride can be the best way to protect yourself and ensure you reach your destination safely.

Safety is a shared responsibility

The unfortunate reality is that you will share the road with drivers who may not be as vigilant about safe driving as you are. These tips and riding with a defensive mindset that anticipates the unexpected can ensure you look out for yourself and others who might not take the same precautions.