If you’re a motorcycle evangelist, you know that sometimes two wheels is better than four. And, now that summer is in full swing here in Massachusetts, you’ll also recognize that the number of motorcyclists has more than doubled on the state’s roadways. Which is wonderful – nothing beats an afternoon drive, whether it’s behind the wheel of a Boston car rental or from the seat of a sexy motorbike. That being said, not all four-wheeled vehicles and motorcycles get along swimmingly, especially in the case of an accident. Before you buckle up behind the wheel of your Boston car rental, remember that motorcyclists have as much right to the road as any other vehicle. As such, it’s important to treat them with the same amount of respect and space as a fellow four-wheel road user.
A Vulnerable Situation
If you feel a little bit nervous every time a motorcycle passes you on the road you’re not alone. One wrong move and that motorcyclist could find themselves pinned beneath your vehicle – at no fault of yours. Smaller and harder to spot than other vehicles, motorcycles can often appear faster and farther away than they actually are. Add in the fact that many motorcycle drivers like to weave in and out of lanes and it’s no wonder than Boston car rental drivers are often weary whenever they see one approaching in their rearview mirror.
And while you can’t control how a motorcyclist maneuvers their bike, you can make every effort to provide them with plenty of space whenever they’re near your vehicle. Remember, since motorcycles lack the safety devices of most cars (including seatbelts and airbags), bikers are most at risk in collisions with passenger vehicles. As such, it’s important for Boston car rental travelers to help these vulnerable road users stay safe.
How to Share the Road With Motorcycle Drivers
There are five important rules that ever Boston car rental driver should remember when sharing the road with motorcycle drivers.
1. Four Seconds or More
When you see a motorcycle in your side mirror, make a conscious effort to slow down and increase your driving distance. Whenever possible, create a four-second cushion between you and the biker. To do so, choose an object next to the road (say a tree or a road sign) and count the seconds between when the motorcycle passes and when you pass. This cushion will give you time to react if for some reason the motorcycle swerves unexpectedly.
2. Pay Attention to the Weather
We’ve all been caught out in the rain unexpectedly at some point. The same is true for motorcycle riders. And while your Boston car rental has windshield wipers, the biker beside you has nothing but their helmet visor to help keep the rain at bay. Remember that the next time you spot a biker out on the road in inclement weather. Chances are they’re on they’re wet, uncomfortable, and itching to get home as soon as possible. Give them plenty of space and try to avoid sending too much spray from your tires in their direction.
3. Turns Can Result in Tragedy
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, a staggering 40 percent of two vehicle, fatal motorcycle accidents in 2012 were the result of a car trying to turn left while a motorcycle was trying to driver straight. Whenever you see a biker approaching an intersection, treat the situation with extra caution. Even if the motorcycle as their turning signal on, that may not be a true indication of their intended action (many motorcycles aren’t equipped with self-cancelling turn signals like cars are, so it’s possible that the biker plans to continue straight). Proceed with caution and when in doubt, always wait for the motorcyclist to make the first move. Sure, you might be met with a chorus honking horns, but when you consider that the alternative is a fatal accident, well, it’s not all that bad.
4. Check Your Blind Spot
As mentioned earlier, motorcycles are much smaller than cars. As such, it’s easy for them to slip up behind a Boston car rental without a whole lot of warning. It’s also very easy for them to get caught in your blind spot, especially when they’re in the process of passing a vehicle. Checking the blind spot of your Boston car rental regularly, especially when preparing to change lanes, will help ensure that this isn’t the case.
5. Practice Patience
This goes for all driving situations, whether it involves a biker or not. Being patient and kind to other drivers is a good habit to get into and one we fully support here at Mayfair.
Watching out for bikers is a good way to ensure your safety and the safety of others on the road. Remember that the next time you’re out in your Boston car rental vehicle.