As a motorcycle rider, you may be at a higher risk for having an accident and suffering serious injuries than if you were driving a car. Unfortunately, the stigma surrounding motorcyclists as being unsafe on the road can make your case more difficult to prove when you are not at fault. There are several precautions you can take to reduce your risk of serious injury and to improve the chances of proving your case when you are not at fault.
Wear The Proper Helmet
Wearing a helmet is a necessary part of being a responsible motorcyclist, but wearing just any helmet you think is fashionable can increase your risk of head injuries and liability. You should purchase DOT-approved helmets for yourself and any of your passengers. These are designed to absorb more of the impact in the event of an accident. If you happen to suffer head injuries during an accident, even when the accident was not your fault, your injuries may be considered preventable if you had worn the proper helmet. Not only can a DOT-approved helmet mean the difference between walking away from an accident and suffering irreversible brain damage, but it might help you receive the appropriate amount of compensation for your injuries.
Take Extra Training
To help debunk the myth of an unsafe motorcyclist, consider taking extra motorcycle training. Many motorcyclists only engage in enough training to become a licensed motorcyclist, but never update their training. Look for motorcycle associations in your area or online that may offer refresher courses. You may also need extra training if the type of motorcycle you use changes. For example, some motorcyclists upgrade to a high-performance bike but are not trained to properly use their new motorcycle. Being on the open road is not the time to experiment with a powerful, faster bike.
Avoid Common Risks
One of the most common causes of a motorcycle accident is when a motorcyclist squeezes through traffic. Although motorcycles are designed to fit into spaces where cars cannot, it does not mean you should attempt to squeeze between two lanes of traffic. Cars may change lanes or simply drifting within their lane can quickly make you lose control of your bike. If you are riding between cars in the right lane and parked cars along the side of the road, if someone in one of the parked cars opens the door and contributes to an accident, you will be at fault. It does not matter if they failed to check before opening the door because you weren't' supposed to be riding there in the first place.
Motorcyclists are especially vulnerable on the open road. Doing your part to be a safe motorcycle rider can help reduce your risk of an accident, but also help prove your case if you were not at fault. Contact a motorcycle accident attorney for more help.