In 2017, over 5,000 motorcyclists died in motorcycle accidents. Additionally, studies show that motorcyclists are 27 times more likely to die in a vehicle crash than car passengers.
Clearly, driving a motorcycle is more dangerous than driving a car. Most motorcyclists are well aware of this fact, and they therefore take extra precautions when riding. However, it’s also the responsibility of car drivers to help keep the roads safe for motorcyclists.
What can you do to ensure there are fewer accidents between motorcyclists and drivers?
Check out this guide to learn how to watch out for motorcyclists.
1. Check Your Blind Spots
One of the most important things to do to prevent accidents with motorcyclists is to check your blindspots.
Because motorcycles are smaller than other vehicles, it’s more difficult to spot them when you’re merging or changing lanes.
Therefore, always take your time when merging or changing lanes and make sure to thoroughly check your blind spot. Also, make sure your car’s side-view mirrors are set properly.
2. Be Careful When Passing
You’re allowed to pass a motorcycle in the same way you’re allowed to pass other vehicles.
However, keep in mind that the gust of wind that comes from your car when you pass a motorcycle can cause the motorcyclist to become unstable and potentially ride off the road.
Therefore, it’s very important that you signal when you intend to pass a motorcycle. Additionally, make sure you are a few car lengths ahead of the motorcycle before merging back into the lane.
3. Stay in Your Lane
Remember, even though motorcycles are small, they’re still legally entitled to their own traffic lane.
Under no circumstance should you drive your vehicle in the same lane as a motorcycle, no matter how much extra space there appears to be. Sharing a lane with another motorcycle is a recipe for disaster. Plus, it can result in a fine.
4. Pay Close Attention at Intersections
Many accidents between motorcyclists and car drivers happen at intersections.
Therefore, you should be especially mindful of motorcycles when approaching an intersection. Even if an intersection appears completely empty, always come to a complete stop and obey traffic signals and signs before crossing the road.
Motorcycles can sometimes come out of nowhere, so it’s very important that you’re paying attention to your surroundings.
5. Look Out for Turning Motorcycles
Automatic-canceling turn signals on motorcycles did not become the norm until the late into the 1970s.
Today, many motorcycles on the road still have manual turn signals. If you notice a motorcycle driving with their turn signal on for an unusual length of time, increase the distance between you and the motorcycle so that you have time to react if they suddenly turn.
Watch for Motorcycles: Wrap Up
Now that you know what to do to watch out for motorcycles, it’s time to put these tips into action.
If you’ve recently been in an accident involving a motorcycle, be sure to contact us today.