When you think of riding a motorcycle, you might exclusively imagine riding on a sunny summer day. But you can still ride your motorcycle into winter if you’re careful and know the safest ways to ride in colder weather. While it could be more dangerous to ride in the winter, there are ways to ride that can keep you on your bike in December and still have fun.
No matter the season, motorcyclists are at greater risk in accidents with motor vehicles because their bodies are more exposed. If you’ve been in a motorcycle accident and suffered injuries and damages from someone else’s negligence, then you could use the help of a motorcycle accident lawyer from DiPiero Simmons McGinley & Bastress, PLLC.
Let’s take a look at some tips for riding a motorcycle in winter in West Virginia.
Keep Up on Your Motorcycle’s Maintenance
Maintenance is important in any season, but especially in the winter because you want to ensure that your motorcycle is in the best condition possible for cold weather. Make sure your motorbike is setup for cold weather riding, the antifreeze is full, and all hoses are in good condition.
Protections from the elements, like widescreens and handguards will be great additions to your bike. You could also invest in heated grips to keep your hands warm.
Have Good Tires
Cold weather means that your tires have less traction from the temperature, but if it’s snowy and icy as well, then you’ll have even less traction. It’s important to have good tires in the winter so that you have as much traction as possible. Check the treads and get new tires if needed so that you don’t slide off the road.
Riding your motorcycle will heat up your tires and help with traction, but any stops can cool your tires quickly. If you make stops, make sure to be extra careful when you start riding again, as your traction could be worse than when you were riding before.
Have on the Right Gear and Layers
You’ll still want to wear all your normal riding gear, like a helmet, gloves, long pants, a jacket, and boots. But since it’s cold and you’ll be experiencing more chill from being in the open air, you’ll want to layer up underneath your gear.
Thick socks, long johns, thermal shirts, and other warm gear can help you from getting too cold on your bike. You could also use hand and feet warmers inside your gloves and boots for added heat to keep you warm.
Increase Your Visibility
Even though you’re layered up in warm clothes and your typical riding gear, you should still be trying to wear bright colors so that you are more visible on the roads. In the winter especially, you’ll want to be visible because those driving cars don’t expect to see motorcycles in the colder months.
Increasing visibility also means that you should increase your following distance and look farther ahead in traffic. This way you have more time to react if an accident should occur in front of you, or if a driver were to cut you off.
Look Out for Salt and Ice
Salted roads could be as serious of a problem for you as black ice. Both cause your tires to lose traction. If you see salt or black ice, be careful and try to avoid those areas as much as possible. If you can’t avoid the area, reduce your speed and ride accordingly.
Plow trucks, salt, and ice can also destroy the road. Look out for more potholes and cracked roads in the winter and ride safely.
Check the Weather Before Riding
The best way to know what to prepare for while riding is to check the weather before getting on your bike. Just like you don’t want to get caught in the rain on your motorcycle, you also don’t want to get caught in a snowstorm that you could’ve known about. Check the weather before you head out, and if they’re calling for snow, consider riding another day.
We Can Represent You
Riding motorcycles can be dangerous no matter the season. In winter especially, though, other vehicles most likely aren’t on the lookout for cyclists and could cause a devastating accident. When this happens and you’re injured and have other damages from someone else’s negligence, then you could use our help.
Our motorcycle accident lawyer at DiPiero Simmons McGinley & Bastress, PLLC can represent you in your claim and get you the compensation that you deserve for your damages. Reach out to us today so we can get started on your case.