With spring in full bloom and summer on the way across New York, many are taking advantage of getting their motorcycles out on the open roads in the warmer weather. However, with all the freedom and fun that motorcycles provide, there are also serious risks to be continually mindful of.

According to the National Safety Council (NSC), while motorcycles made up just 3% of all registered vehicles across the U.S. in 2017, motorcyclists accounted for 14% of all traffic fatalities. While May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, this time of year marks an ideal opportunity for both motorcyclists and other motorists to refocus on key safety measures to keep everyone safe on the roads.

Safety tips for other motorists on New York roads

Cars, trucks and other large vehicles can pose some of the greatest risks for motorcyclists. Due to the greater protection these vehicles have, a crash with a motorcycle can lead to serious or grave injuries for riders. Motorists should carefully check their blind spots when merging or changing lanes, be mindful of the extra or reduced time it can take for motorcycles to brake given the conditions and to watch out for motorcycles especially at intersections.

Staying safe on your motorcycle

Motorcyclists can also benefit from a refresher on several safety tips to contribute to both your safety and the safety of other riders and vehicles:

  • Wear appropriate gear. Be mindful of poor conditions, wear heavyweight or protective clothes and consider wearing brighter gear especially at night.
  • Drive defensively. Be constantly aware of your surroundings, including of larger vehicles who may not see you in their blind spots or react in time to braking.
  • Regularly check for required maintenance. If you are just beginning to ride your motorcycle again, check to make sure everything is in working order.
  • Follow the rules of traffic. Speeding can lead to longer brake times and a higher propensity for accidents. Follow the speed limit and other traffic rules.
  • Be aware of common risks. Intersections are consistently dangerous spots for motorcycles. Stay alert, don’t speed and proceed with caution.

By keeping these safety considerations in mind, driving sober and being consistently mindful of other vehicles, you can protect yourself and enjoy riding your motorcycle in warmer weather.