Lane Safety Tips for Motorcycles
People are injured on motorcycles almost every single day in Alberta, at least in the warm summer months when these bikes are used most often. The fatality rates from motorcycle accidents are higher than those from car accidents, so it's important for riders to know how to share lanes safely. These tips can help.
- Do not go on the right side of a vehicle, between it and the curb. This is a common blind spot. This is especially true with trucks. Even if there is room, the vehicle could strike the bike when making a right turn.
- Always stay as wide as possible when going past a parked car, moving toward the inside of the lane. Even if it looks like no one is there, someone could step out abruptly, not seeing the motorcycle. Leaving a cushion of space can help protect you.
- Watch parked cars closely when people are getting into them. Drivers who don't see motorcycles could assume the lane is clear and pull out into your path. Always look for signs that the car is about to move, such as the turning of the wheels or the brake lights.
- Always be aware of your lane position and the cars around you. It is best to have an escape route in mind at all times. If something unexpected happens – like a car stopping abruptly in front of you – knowing what to do and where to go can save your life.
Even these tips won't prevent all accidents, so be sure you know your rights to compensation if you are in a crash.
Source: Government of Alberta, "Rider's Guide to Operation, Safety and Licensing Motorcycles, Mopeds and Power- Assisted Bicycles," accessed July 09, 2015