Every accident on the road is a potential tragedy, no matter what kind of vehicles were involved. Each time you set out in a car, truck or on a motorcycle, you know in the back of your mind that there is a potential for danger and major risks as you get from point A to point B.
For motorcyclists, those dangers are an even more worrisome reality as they are at a higher risk of injury or death on the roads in New Mexico. Even when motorcyclists take every possible safety precaution, their safety is largely in the hands of other motorists who share the road with these more vulnerable travelers.
No matter what vehicle you drive, every person plays a role in the safety of motorcyclists and their passengers. Both riders and their fellow motorists need to consider some added safety precautions to help reduce the rate of motorcycle-involved accidents in the state.
Driver safety reminders
Car and truck drivers can play a major role in making the roads safer for travelers who are more susceptible to the dangers of the road. Most accidents involving motorcycles involve another vehicle and often the rider is at no fault yet suffers the gravest of consequences.
In addition to the many safety precautions motorcyclists must take, drivers can contribute to safety by implementing a few key strategies:
- Always use a vehicle’s turn signals to indicate intended movements on the roads. Let the signal run for a few seconds before making a move to allow for others to adjust their route and potentially avoid a collision.
- Never crowd into a lane with a motorcycle. They get the full width of a lane, the same as a car or larger vehicle.
- Look at blind spots more than once before changing lanes or turning across traffic. One look is often not enough.
- Leave ample space between your vehicle and a motorcycle. About four seconds of space is a good minimum to keep at all times.
Rider safety reminders
While other motorists can make a major contribution to the safety of motorcyclists, riders themselves also need to consider their own safety as a top priority. Defensive driving can make a major difference since unfortunately not every other driver will consider how their actions affect others on the roads. Always wear high-visibility, high-coverage clothing as well as safety gear when you ride. Additionally, check weather and road conditions and maintain adequate maintenance of your vehicle.
Motorcycle-involved collisions are some of the most damaging and life-altering accidents on New Mexico’s roads. Every person on the road has a role to play in increasing safety for their fellow motorists.