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Why motorcyclists need to “scan ahead” to avoid crashes

Motorcyclists are some of the most “at-risk” drivers on the road. That’s because they can accelerate and travel at high speeds, yet their bodies don’t benefit from any kind of protection in the event of a crash. Yes, motorcycle helmets help. Yes, armored riding pants and jackets help. However, if a motorcyclist gets into a serious collision, there’s a good chance he or she could suffer a catastrophic injury or death, so it’s vital for cyclists to do everything they can to avoid getting into a collision in the first place.

Scanning ahead is one of the best things a motorcyclist can do. This involves looking ahead and around oneself to assess the upcoming risk factors. If a motorcyclist is approaching an intersection, for example, the biker should look to see if there are any vehicles waiting to make a left turn, which would cross in front of the biker’s path. The biker should also check for vehicles that are waiting to pull out into the road. When these kinds of risk factors are identified, the biker can slow down and/or get ready to take evasive action should the other motorist not be paying attention.

The reality of the situation is that numerous vehicle drivers are distracted by their smartphones these days, or they’re simply not looking out for bikers who are smaller, faster and less visible compared to more traditional vehicles. Paying attention to surrounding traffic like this could give a biker the advantage he or she requires to avoid a motorist who isn’t paying attention.

Another benefit of scanning ahead is that it allows bikers to identify objects, obstacles and debris that could be in their paths. This will allow them to take evasive action if there are rocks, gravel, broken limbs, ice, snow, sand, car parts, animals or other accident-causing hazards.

Were you hurt in a motorcycle crash? You may want to learn more about California personal injury law to determine if you can hold an at-fault party liable for your injuries and other damages.

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