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Interested in riding a motorcycle? Read this first.

Riding a motorcycle is a much-loved activity across the country, but it can be intimidating for new or inexperienced riders. If you're interested in riding a motorcycle, you probably have a million different questions - mainly regarding the dangers of it.

Here are answers to a few common questions new riders have about motorcycle safety:

How can I learn to ride in a safe environment?

After receiving a learner's permit, North Carolina riders between 16 and 18 are required to complete a motorcycle education course prior to taking the on-road test. However, the course is also a great option for older permit-holders who have never ridden a motorcycle before. The course can be taken through The Motorcycle Safety Foundation or The NC Motorcycle Safety Education Program. Both also offer further classes to help riders improve their skills.

Is it common to tip a motorcycle over?

Most riders have dropped a motorcycle before. These tip-overs can lead to painful injuries. Riders can practice safety techniques, such as avoiding slippery surfaces, squaring the handlebars when stopping, and maintaining a stable speed to prevent tip-overs.

How long does it take to learn to ride a motorcycle?

Over half of all motorcycle accidents happen to new riders - those with less than five months of experience. While learning to use a motorcycle can take only a couple of weeks, practicing your skills can take several months.

Is it safe for a female to ride a motorcycle?

Anyone can ride a motorcycle. However, it is important to make sure the bike fits the rider. The rider should be able to lay his or her feet flat on the ground while in the seat of the motorcycle and support the weight of the bike. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation advises that riders should be able to support a 300-pound motorcycle while straddling it.

Which motorcycle is the safest?

The safest motorcycle is one that fits the rider and increases his or her visibility. According to the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles, a motorcycle must have at least one, but not more than two, headlamps that provide a sufficient amount of light for at least 200 feet. These headlamps must be on at all times while the motorcycle is in use.

What is the biggest challenge riders face?

One of the biggest challenges motorcyclists face is automobiles. Because the shape and size of a motorcycle is so different from an automobile, drivers in cars are often unable to recognize the presence of a motorcycle on the road. Motorcyclist can also appear to be traveling more slowly and further away than they actually are.

Where do most motorcycle accidents occur?

An accident can happen anywhere, but most motorcycle accidents occur at intersections.

What are common reasons for a motorcycle accident to happen?

Common causes of motorcycle accidents are:

  • Sliding on gravel while turning a corner
  • Entering a turn in the road at high-speed
  • Being rear-ended by another vehicle
  • Being hit when a parked car opens a car door out into the street
  • Being hit by a driver that does not see the motorcyclist

Why do motorcyclists wear leather?

In the case of an accident, leather material can help protect against injury. Wearing the right riding gear can also help increase a rider's visibility to other motorists. Using the following gear can help riders stay safe:

  • Helmet
  • Eye protection
  • Bright colors (green, orange, red, yellow)
  • Leather fabric
  • Jacket
  • Gloves
  • Laced-up boots that cover ankles

Can a motorcycle replace my car?

Motorcycles can be used as a regular mode of transportation. However, it is safer to avoid driving at night or in a storm.

Riding a motorcycle can be a fun way to explore the beautiful scenes of North Carolina, but it doesn't come without its risks. In the aftermath of a motorcycle accident, speaking with an attorney familiar with North Carolina motorcycle laws may help you better understand your rights. 

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