My friend was recently involved in a very minor Bethesda motorcycle accident, but the incident still has me spooked. What sort of things do I need to look out for to keep myself safe on my bike?

As a motorcyclist, you are particularly vulnerable to the dangers of the road, and the mere fact that you understand that means that you are likely a fairly safe biker. Many accidents—in any type of vehicle—are caused by the operator’s feeling of invincibility.

Motorcycles are unique in that riders are just as exposed as bicyclists to the dangers of other motor vehicles, but motorcyclists are usually traveling at speeds equal to those of the cars and trucks around them, opening the door for much more serious injuries.

All of us here at Lewis & Tompkins are very glad that your friend seems to be well after his or her Washington, D.C. area motorcycle crash, and that you have decided to use that experience to make yourself a safer biker. Motorcycle accidents are typically caused by the same types of scenarios, and your awareness of these will greatly affect your ability to avoid injury:

  • Drivers of other vehicles are being inattentive or are simply unaware of your presence: While you cannot control another driver’s actions, by using your headlights and wearing visible clothing, you increase your odds of being seen.
  • Debris such as gravel or sand in the road: While spring is the time to bring your bike out from the garage and hit the roads, winter may have left significant debris on the road. Construction areas and curves are also hotspots for debris.
  • Poorly designed or maintained roads: Potholes, improperly banked turns, or unmarked hazards can all cause motorcyclists considerable trouble.
  • Operating a motorcycle distracted, under the influence, or recklessly: The one thing that you can fully control as a motorcyclist is yourself. Never drive under the influence, know your limitations, and use sound judgment.

Even a small motorcycle accident can cause significant damage and injury, and acting quickly is critical to getting the maximum possible compensation for your crash. The D.C., Bethesda, and Prince George’s County motorcycle accident attorneys at Lewis & Tompkins are standing by to help you get the peace of mind that you deserve after your accident—call now at 202.296.0666 for a free consultation.

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