How To Ride A Motorcycle: 10 Common Reasons For Accidents

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Riding a motorcycle is an art, a pleasure until there is a nasty crash. Accidents are a part of the motorcycle world.

Accidents and crashes are sometimes the best way a person develops his skills or even learns a very tough lesson, that is now embedded in their head so mistakes will not repeat.

One thing to remember always is to never ever get on a motorcycle without appropriate safety gear like a helmet, gloves, shoes and possibly an armoured jacket. And remember—strap up your helmet!

As crashes occur, here are 10 very common reasons why accidents happen:

1. Cutting lanes or just being careless:

Cutting lanes and darting in and out of traffic is a very stupid thing to do. And also there are tons of idiots who take off the motorcycle's rear view mirror. How do you know what's behind you if you've done that? Always warn people if you are trying to change lanes or turning, to avoid ending up under a truck.

2. Taking on mobile phones or listening to music:

Why would you want to speak to someone or even listen to music when you are riding? Listening to what is around you is very important while riding. One unheard sound could end your life easily. Never do that.

3. Not judging a corner:

Going fast around a corner is fun, but not when you have not exited the corner safely. The issue of not judging a corner well is very common. The simple way is to just slow down. There are huge risks taking corners wide since you put yourself and your beloved motorcycle in the opposite lane against oncoming traffic, a huge risk obviously.

4. Leaning too much:

This is another common cause for accidents. Many feel it is ‘cool' to scrape their foot pegs around corners and end up leaning too much. This is a big mistake. Leaning too much will eventually make the wheels lose traction which will end up in you kissing the road.

5. Losing traction:

This can happen because of a lot of reasons. Rain, gravel, sand, mud, ice, or just a patch of oil is enough to make your tyres lose traction and crash. Always keep your eyes open for these factors, and if you sense anything potentially dangerous, immediately slow down. Remember, better late than never.

6. Overspeeding:

Everybody is familiar with this one. Overspeeding will not give you enough time to react if you have to slow down. Speed limits are there for a reason—to obey them. There is a lot of fun in riding slow as well. Try it.

7. Dehydration:

Okay, now there will be people thinking how will that happen? Well, riding under the sun with all the riding gear will make one sweat and lose body fluids. To compensate, do not take off your riding gear but instead, drink plenty of water! Dehydration will make you lose concentration. Just plain water can be a life saver.

8. Performing stunts on public roads:

To try this, one has to be plain stupid. How would one expect to brake with just one wheel on the ground? Performing wheelies and other death defying maneuvers should not be done on public roads. You will end up harming yourself and putting others in harm's way as well. Just don't do it.

9. Riding under the influence of alcohol and drugs:

If you've had a beer, don't even go near your motorcycle. Follow this and one's life is immediately extended by years! Alcohol is a muscle relaxant and once in your bloodstream, it will slow down all your reflexes, which are very important while riding. This is a major cause of accidents in India and around the world.

10. Keep your motorcycle well maintained:

This is very crucial. Keep tail lamps, indicators, lights, tyres, air pressure, engine oil, coolant, brakes and horns under a constant watch and ensure they work. A simple thing like a broken tail lamp could get you in an accident because the person behind you will have no way of knowing you are slowing down. A motorcycle that is not well maintained is an invitation for accidents.

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Story first published: Saturday, March 28, 2015, 10:24 [IST]
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