It is well known that a motorist is far more protected than a motorcyclist, and it’s obvious to see why. Even if a motorcyclist is wearing the necessary safety clothing, they are exposed and without the shielding that a car provides.
Keep reading to find out what you, a driver, can do to avoid collisions with motorcyclists at all times.
Check Your Blind Spot Regularly
We’re all taught this when learning to drive, but once you are used to driving, it’s easy to forget this crucial lesson. Motorcyclists and cyclists are much more difficult to see than other vehicles, and can pass you in an instant, meaning it is easy to miss them or for them to suddenly appear, seemingly out of nowhere.
As well as checking your rear view and side view mirrors, you should also check the blind spots regularly, especially when turning or moving to another lane. Before you perform any manoeuvre, glance over your shoulder and check for motorcyclists in your blind spot – it could mean avoiding a potentially fatal collision.
Be More Aware
As with your blind spot, it’s important to be more aware in every aspect of driving. As a motorist, it is your duty to drive safely and in a way that does not put other road users in danger. It has a lot to do with your anticipation process – not only should you be aware of their presence, but you should anticipate things such as whether they change lanes or move ahead of you.
We all know how motorcyclists can weave in and out of traffic and are capable of achieving faster acceleration due to their lightweight design. When you encounter a motorcyclist, you should use this to judge their speed and determine any potential hazards that could arise. In short, always be prepared to alter your driving to avoid a nasty accident.
Leave Greater Distance
As with any other vehicle on the road, motorists should always make sure they leave enough room – whether actually driving or stopped at a traffic light – for motorcyclists. This is because they may stop quicker than you expect, or certain conditions such as uneven road surfaces or bad weather conditions may cause them to lose control.
When passing a motorcyclist, always show your intentions by indicating, and only move back into the lane when you are several car lengths in front. Be careful when accelerating, too- the gust of air could run a motorcyclist off the road.
Take Extra Care at Junctions
Junctions are arguably the most dangerous part of travelling for any road user, and for cyclists and motorcyclists, the risk is even higher. It is on junctions where these road users are harder to spot. At a Stop or Give Way sign, drivers should take extra time to confirm that there are no cyclists or motorcyclists before proceeding to turn onto the road – especially at night when visibility is poor.
All it takes is a little consideration and extra caution to ensure you don’t cause or become involved in a major traffic collision. Thanks to the nature of a motorcycle or bicycle, riders are far less protected and therefore far more vulnerable.
Remember, saying you didn’t see a motorcyclist isn’t an excuse – it’s your responsibility as a driver to do what you can to be aware of your surroundings and proceed accordingly.
If you’ve been involved in a motorbike accident and you’d like some advice on how to claim compensation, contact us today.