Riding a motorcycle gives a sense of freedom and exhilaration, but the experience also carries dangers that driving a car does not. Because motorcycles offer less protection and are much lighter than cars, riders are more likely to be seriously injured in crashes with other motor vehicles. In the Kansas City area, some of the most dangerous road factors are sudden stops, oncoming traffic, turning vehicles and loose debris on the road. Any of these could lead to a motorcycle accident.
Stopping suddenly and turning vehicles
Motorcycles get around 70% of their braking force from the front brakes, which is no problem in controlled situations. In a circumstance where a sudden stop is required though, hitting the front brake too hard can put the rider at risk of losing control or being thrown from the bike. All too often, drivers fail to notice approaching motorcycles and turn in front of them. This can cause the rider to have to stop suddenly. Riding through intersections requires riders to pay close attention to avoid motorcycle accidents.
Experienced motorcycle riders recognize dangers on the road and know how other drivers perceive them, or fail to perceive them. To an oncoming driver, an approaching motorcycle might look like a car off in the distance rather than a much closer motorcycle. Drivers who are not paying attention or are texting and driving can drift over the center line. A crash is not even required to cause harm, as an unexpected near miss can mean serious injuries or death for a motorcyclist who loses control of their bike.
Gravel and road debris
Because they have only two wheels, motorcycles can be unstable on gravel roads or roads with loose material on their surfaces. Extra caution can prevent many crashes in these circumstances, but riders can lose control at a moment’s notice. Riding a motorcycle calls for extra diligence on the road, but crashes still happen due to hazardous road conditions and the unpredictability of other drivers.