Group riding for motorcyclists can be extremely enjoyable when done safely. If unsafe group riding practices are exercised, a joy ride may get dangerous in the blink of an eye. If you love to ride in a group, consider the following motorcycle group riding safety tips:
Hold a Riders’ Meeting
Hold a group meeting a few days before your group ride. The riders’ meeting should cover points such as the following.
- Chosen route
- Where to stop along the route
- A review of hand signals
- The riding formation
- Equipment and gear needed
- Motorcycle group riding etiquette
- Who will bring what (safety equipment, food, etc.)
The riders’ meeting is an ideal time to ask questions, learn valuable ride information, and review motorcycle group riding rules. Check out these other motorcycle group riding safety tips:
Ride in Formation
Riding in a formation is a very important part of safe group riding. A staggered riding group formation is ideal. In such a formation, the leader rides in the left side of the lane, followed by the second rider behind and to the right of the leader, followed by the third rider to the left and behind the second rider, etc.
A staggered formation provides each rider with enough space and distance to properly maneuver, and react appropriately (such as brake in time) in the event of a hazard or object on the road. If the road is curved or conditions are poor, a single-file formation (with plenty of distance in between riders) may be preferable.
While Iowa law 321.275 permits motorcyclists to ride two abreast, this is not an ideal formation for safety, according to the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. Additionally, make sure you choose two experienced riders to act as the lead and sweep (tail) riders.
Make Sure All Riders Know Motorcycle Hand Signals
Hand signals while motorcycle riding in a group can be a very valuable tool. If you or any of your group members are unfamiliar with standard hand signals, it’s time to review. There are hand signals to signal the actions of the following ane more, all of which can be relevant and helpful for safety while riding.
- Speeding up
- Riding single file
- Slowing down
- Signifying a roadway hazard
- Pulling off the road
Perform Bike Checks Prior to Riding
The night before the ride, do a thorough check of all riders’ bikes.
- Tires are property inflated
- Brakes properly working
- All bike lights and signals functioning as they should
- No mechanical problems are evident
In addition to double checking the bikes, it’s recommended that bikers fill their gas tanks in advance, and carry emergency tools (such as a basic emergency repair kit, cell phone, and first aid kit) in case an accident or bike failure does happen. These motorcycle group riding safety tips will help you be ready if something unplanned happens on the ride.
Have an Emergency Plan of Action
Even if you follow all motorcycle group riding safety tips, an emergency or unplanned event can happen. A rider may get separated from the group, experience bike failure, or get into a traffic accident. Make sure your group has a plan of action in the case of an emergency. The plan may include a chosen meet up place, or making sure that all riders are carrying working and fully charged cell phones to get in contact with one another. All riders should also be carrying basic safety and first-aid gear.
If You’ve Been in a Motorcycle Accident
Heeding motorcycle group riding safety tips may not prevent an accident from occurring. If you’ve been involved in a motorcycle accident in Iowa, you need the help of a personal injury attorney. The attorneys at Walker, Billingsley & Bair can help you to file a personal injury claim for damages, and recover the amount of money that you’re entitled to. For questions regarding how to get started, reach our legal team now at 888-435-9866.