Road Hazards Motorcyclists Should Look Out For
Posted on behalf of Phillips Law Group on Dec 26, 2018 in Motorcycle Accidents
While all motorists must deal with road hazards like debris on the roadway, ice or slippery surfaces, motorcyclists must have a heightened focus on these potential hazards. Things that have little effect for motorists, such as uneven road surfaces, can be potentially fatal for a motorcyclist. It is important that bikers know what hazards to look out for and how to handle them.
If you believe that unsafe roads may have played a part in your motorcycle accident, our Phoenix motorcycle accident attorneys at Phillips Law Group are ready to assist. We can thoroughly investigate your accident to determine if you have a viable claim. If you decide to move forward, we can help you with all aspects of the claims process.
Most Common Road Hazards
Motorcyclists encounter many more road hazards than other vehicles. Many of these hazards may be unexpected. Some possible hazards that motorcyclists should look out for include:
- Rough roadways – Roadways may be rough and bumpy with potholes or other maintenance issues that need to be repaired.
- Loose gravel – Loose gravel can cause a motorcycle to lose traction and knock a biker off balance.
- Edge breaks – The sides of the road may be uneven.
- Slippery surfaces – Oil, wet leaves and other slippery items may be on the roadway.
- Ice and standing water – Ice, snow and standing water can also cause the roadway to become slippery. Riding through standing water can make the tires of a motorcycle hydroplane.
- Railway crossings – Railway crossings can also pose a danger to motorcyclists. The tires can get stuck on the track and cause an accident.
- Road debris – Tire treads, trash and other debris may be on the roadway and may pose a danger to motorcyclists. Debris can hit and seriously harm the biker.
How to Avoid Road Hazards
Motorcyclists can potentially avoid these road hazards, but this requires looking out for hazards and knowing how to properly handle the motorcycle to avoid a crash. Some steps that motorcyclists can take in certain situations include the following:
- Slow down – If surfaces are slippery from rain, snow, ice, sand or gravel, motorcyclists should first reduce their speed because it will take longer to stop. Bikers should pay close attention to the surfaces. They must avoid sudden moves, which can become exaggerated and cause the biker to lose balance. Instead, bikers must make gradual and deliberate movements to keep the surface steady. Bikers should avoid areas on the road where slippery substances build up. When braking, bikers need to apply both brakes slowly.
- React quickly – If a biker sees a hazard in the path ahead, the biker may need to make a quick maneuver to avoid it. He or she should lean quickly in the direction he or she wants to turn and press on the inside of the hand grip that is on the same side of the movement. This maneuver can help a biker maintain balance.
- Avoid distractions – It is more difficult for motorcyclists to see hazards in the nighttime. They must keep their eyes on the road at all times. It is especially important to avoid dangerous distractions like texting and driving. Headlights should be turned on.
- Check the weather – Strong winds can knock a motorist off balance. Motorcyclists should check the weather before heading out. Certain areas are particularly dangerous, including bridges, coastal areas and gaps between buildings. Motorcyclists should ride on the side of the lane that gives them the most space to maneuver and try to stay as upright as possible. They should steer into the wind while trying to maintain balance.
Since motorcyclists must often react quickly to possible hazards, it is important that they pull back and leave enough space between them and other motorists. They should leave at least three seconds between them and the next vehicle. They can determine the distance by fixing on a stationary object and counting how many seconds it takes the vehicle in front of them and the motorcyclist to get there.
Contact One of Our Phoenix Attorneys Today
If you were injured in a motorcycle accident and would like to learn about your options for recovery, an experienced personal injury lawyer in Phoenix can help. At Phillips Law Group, we can discuss your rights and whether you may be able to hold another party liable for your medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering.
We offer a free consultation so that you can learn about your rights and we can analyze your case to determine if you have a viable claim. We work on a contingency fee basis, so there is no fee unless we successfully recover compensation for your claim.