Tips for Motorcyclists Riding Through California Traffic

With often heavy traffic and other challenges, the highways and byways of California can be challenging to navigate, especially on a motorcycle. Sharing the road with much larger cars, SUVs, and 18-wheeled trucks means a rider needs confidence, skill, and experience.

The risk is very real. Los Angeles County accounts for the greatest volume of motorcycle crash fatalities—averaging about 127 annually. To avoid becoming one of these grim statistics, we offer the following tips.

  • Ride sober. A drunk, buzzed, or stoned rider is at greater risk of a crash. You need clear, sharp senses to anticipate mistakes about to be made by other drivers that could put your life at risk—and to avoid making your own.
  • Avoid distractions. Blasting music, glancing at a cellphone, or even getting wrapped up in conversation with a passenger could prevent you from making a split-second decision when the unexpected occurs, which is all-too-common in heavy traffic.
  • Obey laws. Some motorcycle riders are careless when it comes to traffic laws, as though they don’t apply unless you are in a four (or more) wheeled vehicle. Just like everyone else, you must come to a complete stop at red lights or stop signs, yield to other vehicles where indicated, use your directional signals, and obey speed limits.
  • Check twice. Unfortunately, in a collision between a motorcycle and a car or truck, you are far less likely to come away unscathed. This puts the impetus on you, the rider, to be extra careful when making potentially risky moves. Use your mirrors and turn your head to double-check blind spots before merging. Look at least twice before making a turn or crossing through an intersection. The same goes for entering or exiting a highway or freeway.
  • Wear gear. Yes, it can get uncomfortably warm wearing long pants, leathers, and a helmet when riding in the California sun. But you will be grateful you did should you be knocked off your bike by a reckless driver or roadway hazard. Road rash is no joke—and neither is a traumatic brain injury.
  • Be visible. Whatever it takes to call attention to yourself—wear bright colors, use reflective clothing, tape, or actual reflectors. The more visible you are, the more likely it is a driver will spot you before they change lanes or turn.
  • Get trained. Even if you are an experienced rider, it cannot hurt to get extra training on how to ride smarter and more safely. Make sure you know about changes in motorcycle technology meant to prevent accidents and how to utilize these tools to the fullest extent.

Call an Experienced Motorcycle Injury Lawyer

We hope that you do everything possible to keep yourself safe while riding your motorcycle. However, even those who do everything right have the potential to be seriously injured through no fault of their own due to a careless, reckless, or negligent driver. If this happens to you, contact Scott J. Corwin, A Professional Law Corporation, for guidance on how to receive monetary compensation for all losses and damages.

Contact our office today by calling (310) 683-2300 or filling out the online contact form to discuss the details of your case and learn more about how we can help you. We offer free consultations, so there’s no reason not to reach out to someone from our team right away.