There’s nothing like riding your motorcycle through often hazardous, winding, twisting roads of the Granite State to take in the scenery and fresh air. But even more enjoyable is riding with a group of your friends. You can enjoy the camaraderie of your fellow motorcycle enthusiasts, plan a route that takes you all on a breath-taking route, and even stop at a restaurant, café, or gas station to enjoy a meal to refuel yourselves and your bikes.
What can you do to protect yourself and your fellow riders when riding in a group? There are several common-sense steps you and your fellow group riders should take.
Have a Meeting Before You Take to the Road
In the days before your group ride, or even hours before the ride starts, the group should get together in a meeting. In this meeting you all will discuss the route, when/where you will stop for breaks, who will be the lead and tail riders, and the hand signals you all will use to communicate with each other (if not everyone has blue-tooth communication devices in their helmets). Make a plan of what you will do if someone gets separated from the group at either a stop light or some other reason.
If you are riding in a large group (more than seven people), you will want to break the group up into smaller sub-groups of five to seven riders each, with a lead and tail rider designated for each sub-group. Ideally the lead and tail riders should have blue-tooth communication devices so they can communicate with one another. At least one person in each group should carry a first-aid kit and tool kit.
Assess the experience of the riders in the group. If there are several new or inexperienced riders, you will want to pair them up with more experienced riders so there is a balance in each group. In other words, don’t let one of the sub-groups be composed of a bunch of “newbies.”
Come Prepared to the Group Ride
It sounds simple, but many times a new or inexperienced rider will show up for a group ride with the motorcycle on a low tank of gas or with their tires not filled with air properly. The group takes off down the road, and 20 miles later that person signals the need to pull over or stop because he or she is about to run out of gas or there is an issue with the tires.
So before you meet up with your group, make sure your motorcycle has a full tank of gas, the tires are inflated properly, and all signals, gauges, and lights are working properly. Also, make sure you are prepared–bring rain gear if there’s a possibility of inclement weather, etc.
How to Ride in a Group
In a group or sub-group, the lead rider should stay in the left third of the lane at the start of the group. Other riders will then ride in staggered formation behind the lead rider, giving themselves at least two to three seconds of space between motorcycles. The only time a group should ride in a single-line formation is when the group is entering or exiting a freeway, when the road is curvy, or when there is poor road conditions or visibility.
Each rider should not just focus on the motorcycle ahead of them. In other words, you should always be looking at least ten-seconds ahead down the road for hazards and other conditions that could affect the ride. Finally, each rider should ride at the speed that they are comfortable with rather than riding to keep up with the other riders. If someone lags behind because the rest of the group is going at a pace they’re not comfortable with, the tail rider can communicate this to the lead rider. Then the courteous thing to do would be for the lead rider to slow the pace down so the “lagger” can catch up.
Tenn And Tenn, P.A., Motorcycle Attorneys in New Hampshire
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, whether while riding independently or in a group, New Hampshire’s premier motorcycle attorneys at Tenn And Tenn, P.A., can help you. Contact them today at (888) 332-5855 or contact them online.