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5 tips for safely sharing the road with motorcycles

Many automobile drivers and motorcyclists do not know how to safely mix in traffic – leading to crashes and fatalities. Following motorcycle laws and common-sense safety rules for sharing the road go a long way toward keeping employees safe on the road. Our tips can help.

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1 Be observant

Motorcycles can easily be hidden in traffic. Look around for a helmet above, tires below, or a shadow alongside a vehicle that you can’t see around. If you see you are traveling near a motorcyclist, try to predict how they might react to hazards such as poor road conditions, bad weather, flying debris, oil slicks, and heavy traffic.

2 Check your blind spots

Check blind spots before changing lanes or merging, especially in heavy traffic.

3 Leave extra space

Allow at least a four-second "space cushion" in front of you when following a motorcycle, and increase the time at high speeds, in bad weather, in heavy traffic, or on roads in poor condition. Don’t drive beside a motorcycle in the same lane – always allow the motorcyclist a full lane.

4 Watch out when turning left

Many car-motorcycle crashes happen during left turns at intersections. When you are preparing to cross traffic or turn left, take a second look around for motorcycles before you turn or pull out. Because motorcycles are smaller than cars, it is harder to see them and more difficult to judge their approach speed in traffic.

5  Be predictable

Use turn signals to indicate your next move. This helps motorcyclists anticipate traffic flow and find a safe lane position. Be as courteous and respectful toward motorcyclists as you are toward other motorists by obeying all traffic laws, signs, and signals, and by yielding the right of way.

 

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Last updated: 5/17/2018