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How motorcyclists can spot hazards before a crash

There are many hazards that can cause a motorcycle crash in the span of a few seconds, from gravel on the pavement through a sharp turn to another driver turning left and cutting through the bike's travel lane. No matter what hazards riders are facing, the best thing they can do is to remember to look further ahead of the bike and to slow down until they're riding as far as they are able to see.

Many bikers keep their eyes on the road, but they look so close to the front of the bike that it doesn't make a difference. If there's a sudden hazard where they're looking -- that car turning left in front of them -- the riders can hammer the brakes and they're still going to crash. There's just not enough room between the bike and the hazard, considering their speed.

By looking farther and being active in picking out hazards, bikers buy time and are able to reduce their speed more or fully stop. For example, a car sitting in the left hand turn lane is a potential hazard, especially if there are cars ahead of the bike. The driver may wait for those cars, not see the bike and turn.

Since bikers know this is a high-risk situation, they can keep an eye on the car for longer and even reduce their speed if necessary. When that driver makes the expected mistake, the crash may be avoided because the biker is mentally and physically prepared -- or the collision may at least happen at a lower speed.

While paying attention to speed and how far ahead you're looking can be helpful, you can't avoid all hazards, especially when other drivers are negligent or reckless. After you're involved in a crash, you may need compensation for serious injuries, lost wages, medical bills, a trip to the ER and much more.

Source: Gizmodo, "How To Not Crash A Motorcycle And What Will Keep You Alive If You Do," Wes Siler, accessed Feb. 16, 2017

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