Motorcycle Safety: Legal Responsibilities

Motorcycle Safety: Legal Responsibilities

Legal Responsibilities

  • Know your state’s licensing requirements. It has been estimated that one-third of motorcycle operators killed in crashes are not licensed or are improperly licensed to operate a motorcycle. By obtaining a license, state licensing agencies ensure that motorcycle operators have the skills needed to safely operate a motorcycle.
  • Take the motorcycle written test, if required by your state.
  • Make sure you get insurance coverage. Most states require liability insurance.
  • Know your state’s helmet laws.
  • Resist the urge to speed. In 2007, 36 percent of all motorcyclists who died were speeding.
  • Never drink alcohol and get on a motorcycle.

Things Car and Truck Drivers Should Know About Motorcycles

  • Because motorcycles can be hard to spot, always look for them, especially when checking traffic at an intersection.
  • Because of its small size, a motorcycle may look farther away than it is. Predict that a motorcycle is closer than it looks.
  • Motorcycles often look like they are moving faster than they really are.
  • Motorcyclists often slow down by downshifting or merely rolling off the throttle, therefore not activating a brake light. Allow 3 or 4 seconds of following distance and predict a motorcyclist may slow down at intersections without visual warning.
  • Be aware that motorcycle turn signals are usually not self-canceling and some bikers may forget to turn them off.
  • Bikers often adjust position within a lane to be seen more easily and to stray clear of road debris, passing cars, and wind. Understand that these position shifts aren’t to be reckless, show off, or allow you to share a lane with them.
  • When a motorcycle is in motion, don’t think of it as a motorcycle; think of it as a person.

If you or someone you know has been involved in a motorcycle accident, call our Ohio motorcycle accident attorneys at 800.637.8170 for a free case evaluation or to request your free copy of The Ohio Motorcycle Accident Book.