While all road users are vulnerable, motorcyclists are at particularly high risk of being involved in an accident. From cars and lorries cutting them up to making sudden turns or lane changes without even checking their mirrors or blind spot first.
Being rear-ended is when you have a motorcycle hit by a car from behind, and it can result in devastating injuries and bikes that end up in the scrap yard. In this guide, we’ll help you to understand techniques to avoid being in that situation, along with providing advice on what to do should the worst happen.
How to Reduce the Likelihood of Being Rear-Ended
While it’s not always possible to avoid being involved in an accident, there are some steps that you can take to reduce the likelihood of being rear-ended.
1. Use Two Rear View Mirrors
Most motorcycles come with only one rearview mirror, but using two can give you a much wider field of view. This will help you see not only what is directly behind you but also what is coming up in your blind spot.
2. Make Sure Your Brake Lights Are Working Properly
This seems like an obvious one, but making sure your brake lights are working correctly is crucial to preventing being rear-ended by a car. If your brake light is not working, the driver behind you may not realize that you are slowing down or stopping, which could lead to them slamming into the back of your motorcycle.
3. Use Your Horn When Necessary
If you feel like the driver behind you is getting too close for comfort, don’t be afraid to use your horn. A quick honk can sometimes be enough to get the driver’s attention and make them back off.
4. Be Aware of Your Surroundings
This is good advice for anyone, but it is especially important for motorcyclists. Paying attention to the cars around you and being aware of their movements can help you anticipate their actions and avoid being rear-ended.
5. Avoid Wearing Ear Plugs in Traffic
This may seem like an odd one, but wearing earplugs while riding in traffic can actually be dangerous. Ear plugs can muffle the sounds around you, which makes it more challenging to hear horns or other warning signals. If you must wear earplugs, make sure to take them out when riding in traffic.
6. Ride in the Middle of the Lane
Riding in the middle of the lane may not be the most comfortable position, but it can help you avoid being rear-ended. When you ride in the middle of the lane, you are more visible to drivers, and they are less likely to try to squeeze by you.
7. Use Your Headlight
Even during the daytime, using your headlight can help make you more visible to other drivers. When you turn on your headlight, it not only illuminates the road in front of you but also makes your motorcycle more visible to other drivers.
8. Loud Pipes Save Lives
This is a controversial one, but there is some evidence to suggest that loud pipes can help prevent being rear-ended. The theory is that the noise from the motorcycle makes it more difficult for drivers to ignore, and it also makes it easier for them to hear the bike coming.
If you do go down this route, make sure that your bike is still within any legal noise limits and meets the requirements of local bye-laws. So, that might be the requirements for operational mufflers or for your bike to run within a particular range of decibels.
What to Do If The Worst Does Happen
Even if you follow all of these tips, there is still a chance that you could be rear-ended. If that does happen, here are our recommendations for handling the situation:
This may be difficult, but it is essential to stay calm and not panic. Losing your cool will not help the situation and could make it worse.
Check for Injuries
The first thing you should do is check for injuries. If you or the driver behind you are injured, call for an ambulance immediately.
Move Your Motorcycle Off of the Road
If possible, move your motorcycle off of the road. This will help to avoid traffic build-up and make it easier for emergency vehicles to get to the scene.
Call the Police
Even if there don’t appear to be any injuries, you should still call the police. They will be able to investigate the accident and file a report.
Get the Driver’s Information
Be sure to get the driver’s name, address, phone number, insurance information, and license plate number. This will be important if you need to file an insurance claim or take legal action.
If you have a camera or phone, take pictures of the accident scene and the damage to your motorcycle. These pictures can be used as evidence if you need to make an insurance claim or go to court.
See a Doctor
Even if you don’t think you are injured, it is always a good idea to see a doctor after an accident. Sometimes injuries do not appear immediately, but they can still be serious. A doctor will be able to check for any hidden injuries and give you the treatment you need.
Get a Lawyer
Consider hiring a lawyer if you have been seriously injured or experienced financial loss due to a rear-end collision. A lawyer can help you deal with the insurance companies and negotiate a fair settlement. If necessary, they can also file a lawsuit on your behalf.
Getting in the experts will help guide you through the legal process and ensure that you are fairly compensated for your injuries and damages.
Motorcycle rear-end collisions are serious accidents that can result in injuries, property damage, and even death. By following these tips, you can help to avoid being in this situation, to begin with. However, even if you do everything right, there is still a chance that another driver could rear-end you. If that does happen, be sure to follow the steps outlined above to protect yourself and your rights.