A Beginner's Guide To Motorcycles
When it comes to getting from one place to another, you have a whole host of options on your hands. If you are travelling a short distance, you may choose to walk, jog, or cycle. This is better for the environment and free in regards to your finances. If you are going a little further, you have public transport options such as the bus or the train. This, again, is better for the environment and relatively cheap. However, many people prefer the option of independent travel, where they can choose when they head out on a journey and can deliver themselves directly to a destination without transfers, going around the block, or getting dropped off a little out of the way. This is much more convenient and can save a lot of time. The majority of people purchase a car for independent travel. But it’s important to bear in mind that there are other options out there. A motorcycle is just one of these! If you’re interested in taking to the road on two wheels, here’s everything you need to know on the subject!
Safety first! Cars and motorcycles travel on exactly the same roads. So you may think that driving each would be a relatively similar experience in terms of safety. When you ride a motorcycle, you are travelling at similar speed to a car. You are on the same road surface as a car. You follow the same rules of the road as a car. But this isn’t really the case. It has been found that, generally speaking, riding a motorcycle is a lot more dangerous than driving a four wheeled vehicle. Why? Well, there are various factors. To start, a motorcycle only has two wheels, whereas most cars have four. This automatically makes you less stable. Your safety falls down to your balance a lot more, putting more responsibility on you as a driver. Turning corners too fast risks you falling off or tipping too close to the floor and skidding. Then you need to bear in mind that motorcycles are a lot more lightweight than a car. If you hit something, you are more likely to take the brunt of the force. You also don’t have a protective metal case around you. You are exposed to the elements and there’s nothing between you and anything else. There are, however, various steps that you can take to make your journeys a little safer. Here are a few, along with a little advice regarding what to do if you do find yourself in a road accident.
Wear a Full Face Helmet
When you ride a motorcycle, it is a legal requirement that you wear a helmet of sorts. This will help to protect your head should you find yourself in a collision. Now, there are various styles out there, but you should really only opt for a full face helmet. This offers you the most protection. Sure, it can feel a little stifling and you won’t feel the breeze on your face as you ride. But you can usually open up the front for a breather when you have pulled over and are stationary.
Familiarise Yourself with Emergency Protocol
If you do find yourself in the unfortunate situation of a collision, you should follow emergency protocol that has been devised with you in mind. First of all, you should check yourself for injuries. If you are in any pain, identify the source of the pain. You should then carry out basic first aid on yourself should you need it. Call for medical help immediately. If you are okay, then you can take a moment to check out the wellbeing of anyone else who was involved. Any well individuals should move to the side of the road, out of the way of oncoming traffic. Listen to emergency services and do not move anyone who needs to stay still. Instead, alert oncoming traffic to their presence. Next, you need to gather information regarding anyone involved in the collision. This should include vehicle types, makes, and models, as well as registration numbers and the personal details of other people involved. This can then be used to pursue an insurance claim. Finally, you may have to call the police if another driver is not being cooperative and is refusing to exchange information. The police should also be called if a driver leaves the scene without stopping.
Reach Out to a Lawyer
In the aftermath of any incident, it is recommended that you reach out to a motorcycle accident attorney. This professional will be able to survey what has happened to you and may be able to create a case on your behalf. This can help you to receive justice if you have been wronged and can also provide you with compensation for the incident. Many people are reluctant or hesitant to reach out for legal aid for fear of feeding into “compensation culture”. But if you find yourself in an incident, you could face large medical bills and lost earnings (from having to take time off work to recover) as a result. You shouldn’t have to fall into debt because of this!
Pros of Riding a Motorcycle
So, now we’ve got safety out of the way, we can start focusing on some of the pros that come hand in hand with riding a motorcycle. Here are just a few to consider!
Say Goodbye to Traffic
You can zip through traffic when you take to the road on two wheels, weaving in and out of traffic building up during the morning or evening commute or heading in and out of inner city spaces. This allows you to progress at a much faster rate during your journey. Just remember to be a little more wary and go a little slower than you usually would when travelling down the centre of two lanes. This will help you to keep an eye out for hazards and to avoid hitting others’ wing mirrors.
A Sense of Freedom
When you talk to motorcyclists and question what they like so much about taking to the road on two wheels, they will usually mention the word “freedom” in their reply. Riding a motorcycle breaks you free from the constraints of driving in a vehicle. You are exposed to the elements and can feel the breeze run right past you.
Now, the overall price of motorcycles can vary drastically in the same way that the price difference between different cars can vary drastically. Some motorcycles will be cheap, other more desirable motorcycles may bear a larger price tag. But generally speaking, your average motorcycle is cheaper to purchase in the first place than a car of similar desirability. You may even be able to purchase a motorcycle outright without having to worry about saving for months or years on end or tying yourself into an expensive financial agreement. Motorcycles also tend to have greater fuel efficiency than cars, meaning that you get further with the money you put into the tank!
When you drive a car, you are likely to find yourself driving around parking lots for extended periods of time waiting for a space to free up or finding somewhere to park up. Parking a motorcycle is a whole lot easier! They are more maneuverable and they require less room. Many parking lots also have a dedicated area for motorcycles that tend to go relatively unused, as there are few motorcyclists on the roads than car drivers.
As you can see, there are a lot of pros that come hand in hand with investing in a motorcycle and using it as your main means of transport. Hopefully, the above information has given you a better idea of reasons that you might like to purchase a motorcycle, as well as some important advice regarding road safety as a motorcyclist!