Motorcycle RidersI’m not going to sugarcoat this… there were far too many injuries and fatalities on Colorado’s highways and side streets in February. Why? The weather was incredible!  And what does that mean?  More motorcyclists jumped on their bikes and took to the roads.

Motorcycle accidents always increase in the spring when the weather gets warm but thanks to unseasonably warm weather in January and February this year, we lost some friends and are helping others cope with lost work and medical costs due to accidents.

Now, I’m not going to tell you to stay off your bike! (As if!) This article simply reminds you of all the skills you hone over the long summer months, skills that are not as alert in January and February. These are the skills that keep you alive on Colorado’s highways.

Here are the Top 7 Ways to Prevent a Springtime Motorcycle Accident:

  1. Make sure your is bike ready.  It’s a gorgeous day in the snowy season and you want to ride. Before you get on your motorcycle, though, make sure that it is in good working order. If it’s been sitting a few months, make sure to inspect your brakes and tires. Rev it up… is it running properly? Do you have good gas in the tank or has it gone bad and gummy? Go through a mental checklist before hopping on to make sure that your bike responds to your body the way it should.
  2. Check your insurance. Some people turn off their insurance in the winter months, which is fine… as long as you stay off your bike! If you plan to take a ride, make sure you call your insurance agent and turn your coverage back on. To learn more about the types of insurance you should carry, click here.
  3. Ride like you’re invisible. You haven’t been out on your motorcycle in several months. Not only are your skills a bit rusty, but other drivers also haven’t been watching out for motorcyclists. You have to ride like nobody can see you.
  4. Beware of left-hand turns. Assume that the person driving toward you in oncoming traffic will make a left-hand turn in front of you.
  5. Don’t race through intersections. Ever.
  6. Approach intersections cautiously. Don’t approach intersections going so fast that you can’t see what the oncoming traffic is doing. The most common motorcycle accident occurs when a cyclist is racing through an intersection and a car takes a left-hand turn right into him.
  7. Watch for cars coming out from side streets. For example, if you’re riding on Wadsworth and you’re in the lane closest to the curb, you must always be aware of cars coming out of parking lots or side streets. Assume that you’re invisible.

I’m not trying to take the fun out a spontaneously gorgeous day. I just want to make sure you make it home safely once the sun starts to set and the temperatures drop again.

Have fun out there!