Be safe and responsible motorcycle riders

Last month, we discussed ways in which motorcyclists can have safer experiences while riding their two-wheeled cycles along Florida roads. This month, we’re going to delve a little deeper and discuss how a rider’s physical, mental and emotional state can pose dangers while riding.

Maybe it’s been awhile since you cranked up your bike, or perhaps you just bought another bike after years of cruising on four wheels. Just as you want to make sure that your machine is well-oiled and warmed up, so should be your mind and attitude about riding. Take it easy and start out slow with a few low-speed rides around the block until you feel like you’re really back in the saddle again.

Riding a motorcycle when you’re angry is a dangerous practice. Maybe you got into a fight with your spouse or partner. Your mind is half on the road and half re-hashing the argument and coming up with the perfect comeback to use next time. You just set up the perfect storm for a potentially tragic accident.

It should go without saying that riding while intoxicated or impaired on alcohol or drugs is a bad idea, but too many motorcyclists ignore this danger, to their detriment. How can you take quick evasive action when a clueless four-wheel driver cuts you off if you are not thinking completely clearly?

Riding motorcycles is a good way to blow the cobwebs from your brain and make you feel more alive when you feel like you’re running through life on a treadmill. But beware of climbing astride your bike when you’re in the midst of a depressive episode. Depression dulls the senses you need to stay whip sharp while riding.

Fatigue is another riding challenge that can be deadly. If you’re tired, pull over for a quick nap on the grass at a rest area, or find a quiet corner in a cafe, order coffee and rest your eyes for 15 to 30 minutes.

Motorcyclists who have suffered injuries inflicted by at-fault drivers have recourse from the civil courts to recover damages. But it is important to do all that you can not to become a part of the problem.

Source: ridingsafely.com, “Your State,” accessed June 09, 2015