Soaking up the sun and feeling the cool spring air as you accelerate on the open road on your motorcycle, can make any day a memorable one. As we see more cyclists on the road remember – safety is always paramount. Operating a motorcycle, whether a “chopper” or a motor scooter, takes a different skill set than driving a car. Remember that Vehicle & Traffic Laws apply to everyone on the road including bicyclists.
Putting on a helmet is the first safety step. Wearing safety attire can provide additional protection. Each state has its own laws involving motorcyclists.
New York law means:
- Motorcyclists and passengers must wear helmets.
- Motorcyclists must wear proper eye protection.
- If you carry a passenger, there must be a passenger seat and a footrest.
- Only two cyclist can operate side to side in a single lane.
- Motorcyclist must have its headlight on at all times and have working brake lights and a rear reflector.
- Helmet speakers may only have ear piece.
- A horn or other warning device must be operative.
- There must be at least one rear view mirror, although one on each handle bar is recommended.
- Handle bars or grips must be less than 15 inches above the driver’s seat.
Many motorists are annoyed by the loud sound of motorcycle exhaust pipes. However, put yourself in the place of the cyclist on a Harley. From their perspective, loud pipes save lives. Too many motorcyclists perish each year. How often after a fatal crash or a debilitating accident does a motorist say “I didn’t see him.” More than half of motorcycle crashes occur at intersections. More than 2/3 occur when a vehicle’s driver does not see the motorcyclist. Be vigilant. Make sure when you make a left turn you also look for other motorcyclists and bicyclists as well. If you see a motorcyclist on the highway directly in front, don’t tailgate. If you see a motorcyclist on a congested highway cutting between lanes, just let the cyclist go by.
Whether you ride your bike to work, for pleasure with a group or for a charity ride, wherever you may cycle, enjoy the scenery – the freedom out on the open road but remember, safety matters. Never take the risk of cycling after too much to drink or when high.
Whether cycling in the mountains of New York or at the Jersey Shore, be safe, sober and not sorry.
Wherever you may cycle, do the following:
- Always wear a helmet – it should be equipped with a face shield and protective eye wear. A helmet significantly reduces the risk of a severe head injury.
- Wear appropriate gear – protective clothing minimizes injury. Leather garments, boots with nonskid soles & gloves protect your body.
- Follow the traffic rules – Be aware of speed limits and take curve signs seriously.
- Ride Defensively – Always assume that anyone driving a car will not see you, so ride with your headlights on, stay out of a driver’s blind spot and signal well in advance.
- Preparing to ride – make sure your cycle is in proper condition – check tires for cracks and bulges. Check the engine for gas or oil leaks. Make sure brakes, headlights, taillights and signals are working properly.
- Watch out for deer – when cycling upstate, sometimes a deer can jump out unexpectedly, especially at twilight. So be careful, especially in a rural area.
At Fellows Hymowitz Rice, we understand what motorcyclists face. We will fight aggressively to protect the rights of motorcyclists and their passengers. If you are injured as a result of negligence, we will fight to obtain a compensation you deserve and work as hard as possible to obtain the best outcome. Motorcyclists deserve no less.
Call Fellows Hymowitz Rice today at 845-639-9300 for a FREE, confidential consultation. When you call, an experienced New York and New Jersey Motorcycle Accident Lawyer will investigate every detail of your motorcycle crash at no cost.
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