Survey of the States: Motorcycle Safety Programs
Tips for Sharing the Road with Motorcyclists
Drivers of other passenger vehicles should always remember to follow these steps to help keep motorcyclists safe:
- Allow a motorcyclist the full lane width. Although it may seem as though there is enough room in a traffic lane for both an automobile and a motorcycle, the motorcycle needs the full room to maneuver safely. Do not share the lane.
- Always signal your intentions before changing lanes or merging with traffic. This allows the motorcyclist to anticipate traffic flow and find a safe lane position.
- Remember that motorcyclists are often hidden in a vehicle's blind spot or missed in a quick look due to their smaller size. Always make a visual check for motorcycles by checking mirrors and blind spots before entering or leaving a lane of traffic and at intersections.
- Don't be fooled by a flashing turn signal on a motorcycle–motorcycle signals usually are not self-canceling and riders sometimes forget to turn them off. Wait to be sure the motorcycle is going to turn before you proceed.
- Remember that road conditions which are minor annoyances to passenger vehicles pose major hazards to motorcyclists. Be aware that motorcyclists may need to change speed or adjust their position within a lane suddenly in reaction to road and traffic conditions such as potholes, gravel, wet or slippery surfaces, pavement seams, railroad crossings, and grooved pavement.
- Allow more following distance, three or four seconds, when following a motorcycle so the motorcyclist has enough time to maneuver or stop in an emergency. And don't tailgate. In dry conditions, motorcycles can stop more quickly than cars.