Motorcycles are small so it can be easy for one to slip into the blind spot of a vehicle. It can also be difficult for some to judge a motorcycle’s speed or distance. In regards to distance, motorcycles have nearly the same stopping distances as cars, but on slippery pavement it becomes difficult to stop quickly. If you think it’s a bad idea to tailgate another vehicle, just think of how bad an idea it is to tailgate a motorcycle.
In 2014, the Overland Park
Police Department investigated 52 crashes involving motorcycles, and of those, 37
were classified as injury accidents. There were also three traffic-related
fatalities in 2014, with two of those deaths involving the driver of a
The Motorcycle Safety Foundation has some tips
for motorists and motorcyclists.
Look For Motorcyclists - Use your eyes and mirrors to see what's
around and check the blind spots when you're changing lanes or turning at
intersections. Look, and look again.
Focus on Driving - Hang up the phone, put down the MP3
player, settle the passengers, and drive.
Use Your Turn Signals - Signal your intentions for everyone's
Give Two-Wheelers Some Room - Don't tailgate or pass too closely.
Take Your Time - Nothing is as important as the safety
of your loved ones, yourself, and the others with whom you share the road
Be visible – They remind motorcyclists that motorists
often have trouble seeing motorcycles so make sure your headlight works, use
reflective strips or decals on your clothing, be aware of blind spots, and
flash your break light when slowing or stopping. They also suggest using
your horn if a motorist doesn’t see you.
Dress for safety
– Wear a quality helmet
and eye protection, wearing bright colored clothing and a light colored helmet.
Protect your body with leather or other thick protective clothing. Choose long
sleeves, long pants, over-the-ankle boots and gloves. The Motorcycle
Safety Foundation specifically points out that the only thing between you and
the road is your protective gear.
mental strategies and know your bike and how to use it – Constantly scan and search the road for
changing conditions and give yourself and others space and time to respond. Use
lane positioning to be seen, signal in advance, don’t ride tired or impaired,
get formal training, take refresher courses and practice. Lastly, know how to
handle your bike in conditions such as wet or sandy roads, high winds and
more motorcycle safety information visit the Motorcycle Safety Foundation's
website at http://www.msf-usa.org/