Unfortunately, motorcycle accidents are extremely common in South Carolina. The state has even been ranked as one of the most dangerous locations in the southeastern U.S. for motorcyclists.
While this is true, it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy your bike and the open road. One of the best ways to avoid getting in an accident is to know some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents.
Keep reading to learn how to avoid motorcycle accidents and protect yourself if you are in this situation. If you do happen to be involved in a motorcycle wreck, it is best to hire a South Carolina motorcycle accident attorney for help.
1. Wear the Right Gear
When riding your motorcycle, be sure to wear long pants and long sleeves. Choose a thicker material, such as leather, too.
You also need to wear durable boots, eye protection, gloves, and properly fit motorcycle helmets. Wearing a helmet gives you the best chance of avoiding a fatal motorcycle accident.
When the weather gets colder, you need to make sure you add more layers to protect yourself from extreme temperatures. If you do happen to be involved in a motorcycle crash, the additional layers will provide extra protection.
2. Slow Down
The faster you go on your motorcycle, the less time you have to see or react to something in the road, other vehicles, or hazards. For example, speeding may make it hard to see a turn coming up.
This can cause you to go into the corner at a high speed. If you panic, it may cause you to hit your brakes too hard, which will cause you to fly off your bike. Trying to ride through the corner may result in you turning too hard and the bike sliding out from under you.
This is one of the most common reasons people crash and contributes significantly to South Carolina motorcycle crash statistics.
Be sure you never travel at a speed that makes your riding dangerous. Give yourself enough time to react to road hazards. Just one extra second may be all the time you need to maneuver around a gap or hole or a slippery spot ahead.
If it is raining or another type of inclement weather, slow down even more. This is going to reduce the likelihood of a motorcycle accident.
3. Stay Aware of Your Surroundings
It’s important to eliminate distractions while on your motorcycle. Stay aware of your surroundings and the vehicles nearby.
Obstacles, changes in traffic speeds, and sudden stopping may occur at any time. Try not to listen to music or “zone out” while riding either.
4. Make Sure You Can be Seen
It’s smart to wear bright colors when on your motorcycle. You should also add reflective elements to your bike and clothing.
Turn your bike’s headlight on during the day and at night. Ride in the lane that ensures you are visible to other motorists. If you are not sure if a driver sees you, honk.
5. Look Behind You at Intersections
Motorcycles are rear-ended at some intersections. This is particularly common if you stop at a crosswalk or if you let an animal pass in front of you.
If you are in this situation, pull to the side of the lane and flash your bike’s brake light a few times.
When you finally stop, watch behind you to determine if a vehicle is coming. Make sure your bike remains in gear. This will allow you to move forward if a car gets too close or doesn’t notice you there.
6. Check Your Mirrors
You need to check your bike’s mirrors to see what is happening behind you while you are riding. Be sure to check your mirrors before you change lanes, which is an important safety tip to follow.
Your mirrors are there to help you see cars behind you, so you won’t get startled or overtaken. Also, vehicles behind you may have blinkers on, trying to let you know about a merge ahead.
When you check your mirrors, you can gauge the total distance between you and the nearby vehicles. This is going to help you create a safer buffer between your bike and the traffic around you.
7. Avoid Driving Between Parked Cars and Active Traffic
There are a few reasons it is dangerous to weave in and out of active traffic and parked cars. First of all, an unknowing driver may open their door, and you could run into it.
Another issue is that a car may pull out in front of you and cause a crash. Pedestrians may step out in front of you and not give you enough time to slow down and avoid an accident.
Now You Know How to Avoid Motorcycle Accidents
As you can see, there are several steps you can take to avoid motorcycle accidents. If you are involved in a crash – of any kind – be sure to get in touch with a Columbia motorcycle accident lawyer.
Have You Been Seriously Injured in a Motorcycle Accident in South Carolina That Wasn’t Your Fault?
We have experienced personal injury lawyers in Columbia, Lexington, and Orangeburg, SC who know how to fight for you.
Our team at Burriss and Ridgeway can help evaluate your case, gather evidence, and provide you with a strong defense. We can also work to help ensure you receive the compensation you deserve for the injuries and damages you experienced.
For more information about motorcycle accident law or to schedule a consultation, contact our Sumter motorcycle accident lawyers.
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