If you ride a motorcycle, you have probably heard someone complaining about motorcyclists who wear black. Some seem to think motorcyclists should cover their bikes in reflective stickers and wear a bright yellow high-visibility vest every time they take to the roads. As a motorcyclist, you are entitled to make clothing decisions for yourself. However, it is worth remembering that one of the common reasons drivers who collide with a motorcyclist give is that they did not see the motorcycle.
As a motorcyclist, you can take certain actions to improve your visibility without ruining your image. Key among them:
- Turn on your headlights: Using these all day long makes it far easier for other vehicles to spot you.
- Avoid sitting in driver’s blind spots: It may surprise you how much is obscured from view when behind a steering wheel. Remember, the blind spots on larger vehicles such as buses or trucks are much more extensive.
Drivers should also take steps to ensure they see motorcyclists:
- Check their mirrors more: Most drivers fail to use their mirrors enough. Ideally, they should continuously scan between wing mirrors and rearview mirror. It allows them to build up a clearer picture of what is around them.
- Check twice before maneuvring: Checking twice gives a driver two opportunities to spot a motorcyclist. This is especially important before turning left.
- Avoid distractions: Drivers have no chance of seeing a motorcycle if they are not looking at the road. Phones, satnavs, children and dogs can all be distracting.
If you have been knocked from your motorcycle and injured, you may need legal help to fight for compensation. Not seeing you is not a good excuse for a negligent driver’s actions, and you have every right to ask for your losses to be covered.