There is nothing more exciting when it comes to motorcycle riding than an open road and long adventurous day ahead. Riding safely on a freeway, highway, expressway… whatever you prefer to call it, requires quick thinking and undivided attention. Many factors are at play on the highway that can increase the risk of a motorcycle crash such as vehicles merging, high speeds, blind spots and more. Remember to stay alert, and keep these things top of mind the next time you hit the road:
High Visibility and Protective Gear
While high visibility gear and proper motorcycle protective equipment should always be something you think about before hopping on your bike, it is especially important when you plan to travel at high speeds. Opt for brightly colored, motorcycle protective gear to increase the odds of other vehicles seeing you on the highway, while also protecting your body in the event of a motorcycle collision.
Lane Positioning and Merging Vehicles
Whether you’re on a city street or in the middle of a long distance motorcycle ride, on the interstate, always ride like you are invisible. Never get caught in another vehicle’s blind spot. While on the highway, think about the lane you are in and where you are positioned. Avoid riding in the center of your lane where oil and other debris tend to build up. Try to stay away from the middle lanes, which leave you vulnerable to other motorists merging from either side. Ride with your front light on at all times to increase the odds of others seeing you in their mirrors.
Debris and Hauling
Always be on the lookout for debris on the highway and vehicles hauling. Constantly scan and be sure to ride with an exit strategy. In the event of a tire blowout, encountering debris left on the roadway or a hauling mishap, it’s important to position yourself with enough room to safely react. Avoid riding behind a vehicle that is hauling if possible and always allow enough space in front of you to see what is up ahead.
There is a common misconception that riding on the highway is more dangerous than riding on the street. The logic behind this motorcycle myth is that traveling at slower speeds is safer. The reality is, city streets and highways present their own unique set of risks and hazards for motorcyclists. It is important to know these and be prepared for either situation to fully enjoy and safely ride your motorcycle.
It’s A Fine Line is an inclusive community of motorcycle riders advocating one common mission: zero motorcycle deaths by 2030. We want to share videos and stories about motorcycle safety, events, rides, clubs, gear and training because we believe that together we can save the lives of our friends, our families and our communities.