Top Road Hazards for Motorcyclists

While riding a motorcycle may be one of the most invigorating feelings, it is imperative that motorcyclists practice the utmost safety while driving, as there are a myriad of safety hazards that can surprise even the most experienced motorcyclist.

Hazardous Roadway Characteristics

The Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF), in conjunction with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued a statement concerning roadway characteristics which pose a hazard to motorcyclists. The following are listed in the MSF and NHTSA statement:

  • Excessively high pavement ridges;
  • Potholes;
  • Slick materials used to repair cracks and other road surface blemishes;
  • Fluid spills;
  • Roadway debris;
  • Metal roadway surfaces;
  • Roadside barriers; and
  • Work-zone signage practices.

In most cases, all of the characteristics listed above cause poor or complete loss of traction for a motorcycle which causes the driver to potentially lose control. For example, “a motorcycle’s traction can be seriously compromised by bituminous rubberized asphalt sealer used for crack repair and plasticized adhesive pavement-marking tape.” In part, these characteristics are listed for the unique ability to be controlled or remedied by a state or local governmental entity, but also to bring awareness to motorcyclists that these common motorcycle hazards exist.

Other Road Hazards: Sharing the Road

When you set out on your motorcycle you have to trust not only your skills as driver, but the skills of the other motorists accompanying you on the road. Even if you are doing everything correctly, (i.e. staying clearly visible, not following too closely, avoiding riding between cars in traffic, etc.) you cannot account for the mistakes made by other drivers while on the road.

Unfortunately, motorcycles are still less visible on the road and other drivers do not take the requisite care to always look out for a motorcyclist. Even if you are making sure to keep your distance, a distracted driver could make a sudden stop, or make a turn without looking, which may quickly results in a severe accident for the motorcycle operator. These dangers are only heightened when riding at night when a motorcyclist is far less visible.

Other motor vehicles are not the only thing you with which you may be sharing the road. Animals are another obstacle to motorcyclists trying to navigate safe travels. Of course, you should do everything in your power to avoid hitting an animal. However, MSF safety standards advise that if you are in traffic when a small animal runs out in front of you, stay in your lane because hitting something small is less dangerous than hitting a car. Also be aware that motorcycles seem to attract dogs.

MSF recommends, “if you are being chased, downshift and approach the animal slowly. As you approach it, accelerate and leave the animal behind. Don’t kick at the animal. Keep control of your motorcycle and look to where you want to go.” If possible, slowly come to a stop for larger animals, such as deer or elk, as they are unpredictable and more dangerous.

New Hampshire Motorcycle Accident Lawyers

When motorcycle accidents are caused by the failure of the state or local government to properly maintain or mark their roads, or by a negligent driver on the road with the motorcyclist New Hampshire “law allows individuals who have been injured due to another person’s lack of care to file a civil lawsuit taking them to task for their negligence and demanding monetary compensation for their losses and injuries.”

Our motorcycle accident attorneys at Tenn And Tenn, P.A. have experience fighting for your rights in and out of court and we are avid motorcyclists who understand the intricacies of riding on the open road. If you or a loved one have been injured in a motorcycle accident, contact Tenn And Tenn, P.A. today.

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