Fall is the season of transition from enjoyable and comfortable summer riding to the winter when most motorcyclists store their bikes. During this transition, the days get shorter and colder, trees lose their leaves, and weather patterns change. These changes introduce new riding hazards of which all motorcyclists should take heed:
Leaves Covering the Roads
Leaves on the road cause two hazards: they block your view of the pavement and reduce tire traction with the road. Pavement defects and damage, such as potholes, can take you by surprise as can wet leaves. Even a dry leaf cover of sufficient depth reduces your traction, and wet leaves are especially treacherous. Remember that leaves appearing dry on top can be wet and slippery on their bottom surfaces.
Summer weather is typically sunny with afternoon thunder showers. These showers are readily avoided by timing your rides. On the other hand, the fall has lengthier periods of wet weather. This makes rain more difficult to avoid, especially when using your bike for commuting. Bring the necessary gear, avoid water puddles, which can hide potholes, and allow plenty of following space for safe braking.
If you commute to and from work, the shorter days of autumn might require night riding. Make sure your headlight angle is properly adjusted and that they’re sufficiently bright. Don’t neglect your tail and braking lights because these prevent you from getting rear-ended. Keep all lights clean and consider upgrading them to bright LED lights.
Once overnight temperatures drop below freezing, encountering road ice is a real possibility. Assuming you don’t ride at night, the greatest danger for ice is in the morning hours. Morning pavement temperatures in shaded areas lag behind the air temperature. This can fool you into believing that the riding conditions are safe when they’re quite the opposite. In addition, be prepared for icy conditions on bridges.
When riding at highway speeds, the cold airstream can rapidly draw off heat from your body. If you aren’t wearing adequate gear, the cold will make your joints and muscles stiff and slow. This slows down your reaction times and decreases your riding precision.
Numb hands are less effective at braking and shifting, while reduced body core heat causes fatigue and possibly hypothermia. Make sure to wear goggles rather than riding glasses in order to prevent the cold air from making your eyes secrete too many tears. This blurs your vision.
If a reckless or negligent driver injured you in an accident, an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer at the Law Offices of John Critzos, II can help. Please visit our Facebook page and like it, tell your friends about our Facebook page, and if you like, leave a message or share this Facebook post! Further, please remember to bookmark our website (www.844TakeMyCase.com) and put our number in your phone (844-Take-MyCase). In this manner, we are only a click or call away, if the need arises! Stay safe contact us at any time!
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