Five Tips to Drive Safely Around Motorcyclists
Jul 23, 2018
By: Mallory DeZwarte
Warm summer weather brings more traffic to the roadways—families taking vacation, young adults on break from school, and motorcyclists out for a ride. Follow these five tips to safely share the road with motorcycles.
Always signal, and check mirrors and blind spots. Of course, these behaviors should be done to begin with, but they are doubly important when sharing the road with motorcycles. It is easy for a motorcycle to go unnoticed in a casual glance prior to a lane change.
Give them the whole lane. Just because they’re smaller and only take up a portion of the lane does not make it okay to pass them in the same lane. Give them the full lane, just as you would with any other vehicle.
Treat motorcycle turns with caution. Most motorcycle signals often aren’t self-cancelling, so the driver must remember to manually turn it off. When approaching a bike with its turn signal on, wait a moment to ensure they are actually turning.
Give motorcycles extra following and passing distance. Often, motorcyclists slow down by only rolling off the throttle or downshifting, so you may not always see brake lights to indicate a stop. Allow additional following time for motorcycles and always assume a bike will brake when approaching a stop at an intersection.
Large vehicles, watch out! Vision from a large truck or van can be limited, and the blind spots are larger than other vehicles. This makes it harder to see smaller cars and motorcycles around you. Be extra cautious when making turns or changing lanes by keeping in mind that a biker may be harder to see.