California drivers, motorcyclists must stay alert, follow rules

Even the most experienced California motorcyclists - and drivers - need a reminder about the rules of the road.

Here's why motorcycle safety is so important: Motorcyclists are six times more likely to sustain an injury - and 27 times more likely to be killed - than those riding in cars in an accident, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Both motorcyclists and automobile drivers need to take responsibility for their actions, especially during summer months when more motorcyclists are on the road.

Safety tips for drivers:

  • Check your blind spots and mirrors for motorcyclists, especially before entering or leaving traffic and at intersections.
  • Use your signals so that the motorcyclist can see what you intend to do. Even when you signal, make sure the motorcyclist sees you.
  • Increase the distance you follow behind motorcycles to allow you enough time to stop in an emergency.

Safety tips for motorcyclists:

  • Check the condition of your motorcycle before heading out for a ride. Check your tires, and make sure your headlights, turn signals and brakes are in good operational condition.
  • Secure and balance your cargo; make any adjustments necessary to the bike if you're carrying extra weight.
  • No matter how warm the weather is, wear your safety gear: approved helmet, motorcycle gloves, pants and jacket.
  • Follow traffic laws and always use your signals. Use hand signals, too, for extra safety.
  • Don't ride if you've been drinking. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 26 percent of the riders who were killed in 2016 were under the influence of alcohol.

As fun as riding a motorcycle can be, it has inherent dangers. That's why both motorcyclists and drivers need to be as cautious as possible. If you are a motorcyclist who has been injured in a crash caused by someone else's negligence, a California attorney can help you as you move forward in your recovery.

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