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Pointers for motorcyclists

Published:Sunday | November 10, 2019 | 12:14 AMPaul Glenroy Messam - Automotives Writer

Many difficulties could be avoided if we accepted the motorcycle as a vehicle.

Drivers, bike riders, and bicycle riders use up a portion of the roadways together.

“By cooperating, they can avoid conflicts,” says Kanute Haire, Director of the Road Safety unit in the Ministry of Transport.

“Motorcyclists have a responsibility to avoid collisions and obey the road code,” says Haire. “They should know their limits, the handling characteristics of the bikes, and the correct protective equipment required for safe driving.”

Motorcyclists need the necessary defensive driving skills, an understanding of traffic dangers and a stress-free mind to hit the road.

“The best way to learn the skills needed to ride safely in traffic is to go through a course in motorcycle riding through a certified driving school,” advises Lurkent Hanson, an experienced senior driving instructor.

“Just as there are basic defensive driving procedures needed for operating a motor car, there are also critical procedures to learn for the safe operation of a motorcycle,” he added.

The concepts of starting, stopping, balancing, and controlling the bike, need to be mastered from early. Motorcyclists are left in the open to many elements. All cyclists should ‘cover’ themselves to escape or reduce injury in any eventuality.

1. Motorcyclists should wear a helmet, protective gears.

2. Eye protection: goggles or a face shield for eye protection. The face shield is that clear plastic device that is attached to the helmet.

3. Gloves, heavy shoes or boots.

4. Pants and a jacket with bright reflective materials.

According to Walter Philp, former head of the police traffic Department, “Wearing helmets can save the lives of many cyclists.”

He explained that cyclists who do not wear helmets are three times more likely to receive fatal head and neck injuries than riders who do wear them. Helmets that cover the full head and neck are even more effective.

According to the Road Safety Unit of the Ministry of Transport, under the law, “Every person at all times, while driving or riding on a motorcycle, should wear a protective helmet of a prescribed shape, quality, construction or standard.”

The unit also states that the standard which identifies motorcycle helmets approved under the law are found in sections 13 and 15. As well as part B of the first schedule of the Road Traffic Regulations, list, the approved standards to which all motorcycle helmets shall conform.

Preventing conflicts with Cyclists

1. Never try to pass a rider in a tight situation.

2. Warn a rider, when necessary, with an early tap on the horn.

3. Signal intentions ahead of time.

4. Help others identify bike riders by adjusting your position. At night, use low-beam headlights or a brief flick of high-beam headlights so that others can see bike riders.

5. Reduce speed if necessary.

6. Look for cyclists before opening street-side doors.