Not surprisingly, winter is not exactly the best time to ride a motorcycle since visibility and weather conditions make it more difficult and unsafe to be on a motorcycle. However, if you simply cannot take a break from motorcycling during the next few months, take steps to keep yourself as safe as possible.
Some of the biggest challenges involved in riding during the winter have to do with the poor visibility and the biting cold that can make handling a motorcycle very challenging. The roads may be slick and wet or covered with salt, creating slippery conditions that can increase the risk of skidding. Even though Georgia doesn’t get much snow, there are many days and nights where the roads in the Atlanta area and beyond are covered in black ice making riding especially dangerous.
To prevent the severe cold from reducing your ability to handle your ride, dress for the weather. Numb and sore fingers and stiff joints are a definite risk during winter riding. Dress in warm and dry clothing that keeps you as comfortable as possible. Waterproof boots and gloves are an absolute must – these will keep your feet and hands dry and comfortable. You are also much more likely to be able to quickly take emergency steps to prevent an accident when your hands and feet are protected from the cold. Use plenty of insulated layers, long – sleeved tops and windproof pants to avoid the cold from cramping your riding style.
Winter is when visibility is really poor as the days are shorter and the weather is bleaker. These conditions can make your visibility to other motorists more difficult which only increases your risk of being in an accident. Invest in fluorescent, high-visibility clothing especially for the winter months. It might not look stylish, but safety has to be your top priority if you choose to ride during dark, icy days. If you cannot give up your black motorcycle gear, wear reflective or fluorescent panels, and stand out in the dim weather.
Also, avoid motorcycling in the winter if you are a novice or just beginning to ride. As with everything else, practice makes perfect, and an experienced motorcyclist will be much more likely to be able to navigate tricky and dangerous road situations to avoid being in an accident. If you’ve just started riding, maneuvering your motorcycle on wet, slippery roads may be a challenge that could prove too much for you. Wait the season out before you resume biking.
Remember – slow riding is key. Avoid high speeds. Avoid sudden sharp braking even if your motorcycle has an Automatic Braking System.
Lastly, make sure that your motorcycle is equipped to handle winter weather. Get your motorcycle thoroughly serviced before winter. Make sure that your lights are all working properly, and keep in mind that the battery might be the first to get affected by the cold climate.
Follow these tips to increase your chances of safe riding this winter.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries in a motorcycle accident, you may be eligible to file a claim for compensation for your losses. Damages could include medical expenses, lost income and pain and suffering. Talk to an experienced motorcycle accident attorney at the Katz Law Firm, and determine whether you have legal rights to a claim.