A recent road accident statistics report states that two-wheelers make up 23.2% of road accidents in India. The numbers are staggering, over 1.1 lakh deaths! Bureaucratic apathy has prevented improvising licensing rules. Unwillingness on part of the ‘junta’ (people) to self-introspect, learn and change doesn’t help. But, all is not lost just yet. Bad habits while riding isn’t a permanent affliction. I’ve identified a few of these common habits with some preventive measures along with some motorcycle riding tips to help you ride safer everyday and prevent common mistakes when riding motorcycles.
Only Lord Ganesha gets a replacement
‘I don’t need it’ or ‘because my hairstyle goes for a toss’ are habituated responses, conditioned into our being. It stems from our lack of focused traffic education which leads to one thing always; excuses which are downright lame! Benefits of wearing helmets outweigh the cons yet the ignorance is appalling. Despite the fact that two-wheelers outnumber four in our country, there is a lot of cynicism and irrational behavior towards wearing a helmet.
Our traffic is chaotic and a face-off with the tarmac in a lifetime is inevitable! But this hasn’t sunk into the minds of our countrymen and women. So, if you can’t wear all the gear all the time (ATGATT), then at the very least wear a helmet, every time! Things go terribly wrong when you least expect it to. Don’t make the same mistake twice. Helmets save lives, period! If don’t own one, get a full-face motorcycle helmet now. Good riding habit requires using your brain and keeping ignorance at bay.
Self Control is more than just two words
Lane splitting is legal in many countries. Sometimes inevitable, often a necessity and it’s nearly impossible to ride without changing lanes on our roads today. But, swerving recklessly in traffic puts you in danger and someone else in harm’s way. Use turn indicators while changing lanes and don’t forget them when taking turns. Texting while riding is another activity that needs to stop, it’s just another one of those mistakes when riding motorcycles. Pull over, finish your business and ride on instead of blocking your lane by slowing down to text with one hand and ride with another.
Watch those rear-view mirrors and if don’t have one, get them installed immediately. Do not tail gate anyone while on a two-wheeler. Always stop with a reasonable gap in front of you. Just in case a speeding vehicle decides to rear end into you before coming to a halt, you will have some space to move out of its way. This is one of the most common mistakes when riding motorcycles.
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