Motorcycle Maneuvering: Four Mistakes Drivers Often Make When Sharing The Road

Posted on

Just the sight of a motorcycle approaching can be enough to paralyze some drivers. Motorcycles tend to be very fast, zip through traffic and dominate their space, which can make even a seasoned driver a bit nervous. If you want to avoid an accident that has a naturally high chance of casualty, there are a few habits and maneuvers that you should avoid.

1. Changing Lanes In Front of a Motorcyclist

If you need to switch lanes, it's always best for you to cross behind the motorcyclist rather than ahead of the motorcyclist. It's very difficult to gauge the speed of a small object, especially relative to yourself. The motorcyclist may be moving faster than you think -- in which case you could run right into them when changing lanes! And if the motorcyclist stops abruptly to avoid you, that could lead to an accident behind both of you.

2. Following Too Closely Behind

Tailgating isn't acceptable with vehicles either, but it becomes more dangerous in situations that involve motorcycles. It's only natural to follow someone closely behind in traffic, but the consequences of rear-ending a motorcycle are far more likely to be fatal than rear-ending a car. Whenever you're in doubt -- even in traffic -- make it a habit to give the motorcyclist in front of you a little more space.

3. Not Checking Between Lanes

"Lane splitting," the practice of a motorcyclist driving between lanes rather than within them, is legal in many cities across America. If you're unfamiliar with this law locally or are traveling from state to state, you might forget to check between lanes entirely. This can be very dangerous. Lane splitting is more common in large cities, so remain vigilant to avoid an accident and make sure that you don't have anything hanging out of your window... including your arms.

4. Forgetting Your Blind Spots

Most people check their blind spots frequently, but the problem is that they're checking for a car-sized object. Eventually, some drivers assume that if a car-sized object couldn't fit in their blind spot, they don't need to check. Keep bicycles and motorcycles in mind and always check both your mirrors and behind you. Otherwise, it could be very easy to back into a motorcycle that you couldn't see.

That doesn't mean it's your fault if you get into an accident with a motorcyclist -- it just pays to be extra cautious on the road. If you do get into an accident with a motorcycle, calling a motorcycle accident lawyer is usually your best bet. Many times, it's best to call your lawyer before you even talk to your insurance company. To find out more about accidents, speak with someone like Welsh & Welsh PC LLO.