Monday, April 13, 2009

Safety Tip: Avoiding Being Hit from Behind

On motorcycles we are vulnerable to being hit from behind while stopped in traffic. Last year, in a car I was hit from behind. The accident caused only minor damage to the car, and no injury to me, but I thought about what it would have been like if I had been on my bike. A simple collision from behind could be very serious on a motorcycle. As a rider you can take precautionary steps to help the driver behind you see you and reduce your risk of being hit from behind.

1) Watch your mirrors. Know if there is a vehicle following you too closely.
2) Brake early to let the driver behind you know that you will be slowing down.
3) Flash your brakelight to get the driver's attention.
4) When stopping in traffic, leave room to manuver out of the way if someone comes up behind you fast and can't stop.
5) Keep pace with traffic when road and weather conditions permit. Don't ride 40 mph on the freeway when all the other traffic is going 70 mph.
6) Get rid of tailgaters. Slow down and let them pass.
7) Keep your following distance safe so you don't have to stop suddenly.
8) Be aware of what is happening far in front of you. Anticipate when traffic might suddenly grind to a halt to avoid sudden braking.

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