Riding a motorcycle is thrilling. Sitting atop only two wheels and feeling the wind whip around you is an exciting part of being a motorcyclist, but those are also reasons why riding a motorcycle can be so dangerous. Safety while riding is vital—without the proper training, attention, and equipment, a motorcyclist could put their own life and others’ lives in danger.
Motorcycle accidents often cause serious injury to the rider because they are more exposed than they would be in a regular vehicle. Serious injuries can rack up extreme medical bills, cause you to miss work and lose wages, and accrue even more costs if the accident caused partial or permanent disability. Since the collision wasn’t your fault, you shouldn’t have to worry about any of those expenses. A Charleston motorcycle accident lawyer can help you recover financially so you can focus on physical and emotional recovery.
Safety Equipment for Riding a Motorcycle
Safety on a motorcycle means more than just wearing equipment that will help you if you get into a crash. Safety equipment is also intended to increase your visibility so that regular-sized vehicles are less likely to crash into you because they can see you more easily. Since motorcyclists are 28 times more likely to die in an accident than the occupants in a regular motor vehicle accident, you’ll want to wear as much safety gear as possible to lower your risk of injury or death in the event of a motorcycle crash.
While not all of these are required by law, every biker should own most of this safety equipment so that they increase their visibility and decrease their risk of injury:
- Face shield or goggles
- Long, thick pants
- Hearing protection
- Elbow, shin, and knee guards
- Body armor
- Bright clothing
Equipment isn’t the only way a motorcyclist can be safe. Although not every accident can be prevented, by being vigilant, driving carefully, and making smart decisions, motorcyclists can reduce their risk of accidents. The biggest safety tip that motorcyclists should keep in mind is to assume that the driver of a regular vehicle cannot see them. This can help you make safer decisions while riding because even though you think the driver sees you, they might only be paying attention to other cars, not motorcycles. By assuming they haven’t seen you, you can keep yourself safer on your motorcycle.
West Virginia Motorcycle Laws
Some motorcycle safety equipment is your choice to wear, even though choosing to wear it is in your best interests. Not all safety equipment is required by West Virginia law, so you do not have to wear it if you don’t want to. It’s important to know what safety equipment is required by law before you ride, though, so that you do not break the law.
According to West Virginia Code, each person riding a motorcycle, driver or passenger, must wear a helmet and goggles or face shield. Some other safety measures you must legally comply with while riding a motorcycle include the following:
- Handlebars or grips cannot be over 15 inches higher than the highest point of the seat.
- Riders must sit facing forward.
- There can only be as many riders as there are seats, so a rider may only have a passenger if the motorcycle is designed for two people.
- Any passengers in a factory-produced sidecar must wear helmets, goggles, and a seat belt.
- Rear-view mirrors must be fastened on the handlebars.
DiPiero Simmons McGinley & Bastress, PLLC Will Represent You in Your Motorcycle Accident Claim
After a motorcycle accident that wasn’t your fault, you could be recovering from life-changing physical and emotional injuries. If the injury caused partial or permanent disability, then you could be worrying about the financial burden of your accident for the rest of your life. At DiPiero Simmons McGinley & Bastress, PLLC, we believe that you shouldn’t have to pay for your injuries when you weren’t the one who caused your accident.
Our Charleston personal injury lawyers are experts who know how to handle your motorcycle accident claim. We will fully investigate the crash so that we know exactly what happened and who was at fault. Once we establish fault, we can focus on recovering the compensation that you deserve. Reach out to our office today so that we can discuss your potential case and start working toward getting you justice.