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Safety tips to prevent motorcycle accidents

Here in North Carolina we still have a few months left in 2014 to enjoy some wind therapy on motorcycles. However, as always, it's important to stay as safe as possible when riding two-wheeled cycles on the highways.

To prevent accidents and avoid having to pursue litigation for compensation for any injuries, keep these safety tips from the Motorcycle Safety Foundation in mind.

-- Use your horn if you believe a motorist can't see you.

-- Visibility is key. Wear reflective clothing or attach reflective strips to shirts, jackets and helmets.

-- Before stopping or slowing down, flash your brake lights.

-- Remember that all cars and trucks have blind spots.

-- Keep your working headlight on night and day.

-- Never get on a bike without an approved helmet and eye protection.

-- Wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts, boots and motorcycle gloves to protect body parts from road rash when spills occur.

-- While riding, constantly scan and search the road for changing or dangerous conditions.-- Allow enough space and reaction time to respond to the actions of other motorists.

-- Watch for vehicles that are turning, and always signal in advance your next move.

-- Follow the rules of the road and don't speed. When conditions warrant, go below the posted speed limit.

-- Practice your riding techniques before riding in heavy traffic. Know how to handle your motorcycle in adverse conditions like rain, high winds and uneven surfaces.

-- Position your motorcycle in the lane where it is most visible.

-- Don't weave between lanes or ride two or three abreast in one lane.

-- Don't ride after consuming alcohol or other drugs.

It's important for motorcycle riders to understand that they have to take extra safety precautions because they are not surrounded by a metal cage for protection. Stay safe and arrive alive.

Source: Motorcycle Safety Foundation, "QUICK TIPS: General Guidelines For Riding A Motorcycle Safely" Aug. 19, 2014

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