It seems that winter has finally turned the corner and now spring and summer are full steam ahead. This means many people are getting their motorcycles out of the garage or shed and tuning them up to take them on the road. It’s important to remember that there are steps you could take in getting your motorcycle ready. These steps could decrease the chances of being hurt in an accident and needing to hire a Philadelphia motorcycle accident lawyer.
Motorcycle maintenance is one of the most important things you can do to make sure that your bike is in tip top shape to take out on the roads and enjoy the new sunny weather.
Since lives were recently claimed in two different Philadelphia motorcycle accidents, this is an important reminder of doing all that you can to stay safe on the road while enjoying the breeze riding your bike.
What to Look for In Your Motorcycle Maintenance?
Start by looking at your owner’s manual and consider bringing your bike to a mechanic for any extensive maintenance tasks that you might have put off at the end of last season. An annual checkup could help to flag problems early on and this could decrease your chances of being hurt in an accident. First of all, don’t start riding in the new season with gas from last year. Drain from the carburetors any fuel that is older than six weeks.
Gasoline can turn thick or even evaporate when left to sit and this can cause problems with your passageways and your carburetor jets. Even if you topped off the oil in the fall, now is a good time to take a look at the oil as well.
Getting your mechanic to look at some of the key maintenance issues on the bike is one of the easiest ways to avoid problems, such as an accident the first or second time you are out on the road. A brake check is an important component of this maintenance review. Look at brake lines, brake pads, and brake fluid even before going out on your first ride.
Warning Signs of Motorcycle Part Wear and Tear
If you notice any cracked lines or worn pads, contact your motorcycle mechanic to fix these as soon as possible. Test the rear and front brakes separately to ensure that there is no squealing, scraping or other problems that could catch you off guard on the road. Your tires are also well worth a full review or even a more thorough check by the mechanic.
Nothing will stop your spring and summer ride faster than a flat. Low pressures can make motorcycles more challenging to handle while also increasing the wear and tear on your tires. Look for any signs of damage that might have occurred over the course of the winter while in storage. If you need to replace the tires, it’s far safer to start off the season with fresh tires you can trust.
Another common problem that emerges over the winter for many motorcycles is a drained battery. Plenty of riders take their batteries out during the winter and keep them powered up with vehicle chargers or tenders. Anyone who skipped this step last fall will need to recharge the battery prior to spring. If it’s been a while since you have been on the bike, it’s also a good idea to brush up your skills before hitting the open road at high speeds.
Even if you are an experienced rider, you can’t count on everyone on the road being willing to share it with you in the safest possible way. Far too many motorcyclists end up on the side of the road or even killed because other people weren’t prepared to share the road or follow basic road laws. Since you can’t count on anyone else to protect you when it comes to putting your bike on the road, you need to make sure that you are always visible to other drivers and follow all road rules and regulations on your own.
Risks of Driving A Motorcycle
The National Motorcycle Institute shares that anyone on a motorcycle is at 27 times higher risk of accidents than driving a car. One of the easiest ways to minimize the chances of being seriously hurt in an accident is to always wear a helmet every time you are on the road, even if you are familiar with the roads you are operating on or feel that there is no significant traffic.
Wearing your helmet or other bright clothing also makes you more visible to other people. Drivers often get used to not having to share the road with motorcyclists over the course of the winter, which can make for a difficult transition when the first beautiful days of spring mean more bikes are on the road than ever before. Many people who are not used to having to maneuver around bikes or even look in the rear view or side mirrors for motorcycles, suddenly find themselves having to share the road might not be as accommodating as you expect.
Avoiding Motorcycle Accidents
As a motorcycle rider, you have to take your safety into your own hands. Make sure that you always buy the best bike for your riding level to avoid the possibility of a Philadelphia motorcycle accident. If you took an extended break from riding over the winter or are a new motorcycle rider, the performance of today’s motorcycles could surprise you since they are more powerful and faster than in the past.
Getting an inspection done and keeping up with all maintenance related tasks could help you to maintain control of the bike when you are on the road. Wearing the right riding gear is less about being comfortable and more about protecting your body in the event of an accident. Any motorcycle rider should always look for protection in the gear purchase, such as protection from wind chill, elements, flying bugs, debris, or even road rash if you get thrown off your bike.
Common Causes of Philadelphia Motorcycle Accidents
Taking all of the precautions listed here and always being mindful of your surroundings will go a long way in reducing your accident chances, not all accidents can be avoided. If another driver is negligent, as the motorcycle rider you have the highest chance of being seriously hurt or killed in an accident.
Some of the most common causes being Philadelphia motorcycle accidents include:
- Drivers changing lanes without noticing a motorcycle in the other lane
- Drivers looking at their phone, GPS, or another device and drifting out of their own lane
- Drivers turning into an intersection when a bike is coming from another direction
- Drivers merging onto a busy highway without checking for motorcycles in their rear view mirror first
- Drunk driving
- Aggressive or reckless driving
What to Do If You Have Already Been in An Accident
If you have already been seriously hurt in a motorcycle accident in Philadelphia, you need the support of an experienced personal injury lawyer who knows just how challenging it can be for someone who needs to put the pieces of their life back together and potentially recover compensation. All too often, it is the motorcycle rider who is blamed for the accident.
An investigation with the help of a Philadelphia accident lawyer, however, could tell a different story. Knowing what evidence you will need from the scene or whether or not an accident reconstruction team could help would be instrumental in helping you put together an injury claim.
No motorcycle rider expects to be involved in a crash, but when it happens you have a limited period of time to file a lawsuit. You could recover a broad array of compensation from lost wages to medical bills to pain and suffering in a lawsuit, but only when you file within the Pennsylvania statute of limitations and take the next steps as soon as possible after the motorcycle accident occurs. Your days will now be filled with attending doctor’s appointments and keeping on top of your medical care. You can’t afford not to get help from a Philadelphia motorcycle accident lawyer. Call Fox Law today at 215-568-6868 for a free consultation. We can help you receive the compensation you deserve.