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Avert motorcycle accidents: Get training, honor safety rules

In New Hampshire and other states, most motorcycle drivers are generally aware of safety factors and try to follow the right protocols for safety on the roads. However, as a general rule, a majority of motorcycle accidents are caused by the driver of a four-wheel vehicle. Motorcyclists will benefit by keeping this in mind and following certain measures for increased defensive safety.

In New Hampshire, there are no specific regulations mandating the use of helmets. The best policy for safety's sake, however, is for each cyclist to use a helmet when driving. It is also prudent to ride wearing bright colors to increase visibility. In many motorcycle accidents, the driver of a car or truck state that they never saw the cycle prior to impact.

For those operators who are relatively inexperienced or just starting to learn how to drive a motorcycle, practicing skills with breaking, stopping and shifting is an important first level of learning. The operator of a motorcycle must be able and ready to stop before colliding into a moving vehicle or a stationary object. It is also wise for the motorcycle operator to be proficient in turning the bike on the roadway. Many accidents occur during abortive turn attempts.

It is also recommended that those learning motorcycle skills practice in bad weather to understand how best to control the cycle during those challenging circumstances. Beginners will do best to follow an easy pace and to practice in a parking lot or other surface with restricted access. It is critical for motorcyclists to honor the rules of the road, such as the laws and regulation that exist here in New Hampshire. Speeding and improper passing are two major areas where motorcycle accidents may occur through the fault of the motorcycle operator.

Source:, "Motorcycle safety's many factors", Cody Neuenschwander, July 13, 2017

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