Riding a motorcycle allows you to experience the road in a completely different way. There’s a sense of freedom and adventure that can’t be found when driving a car. However, there are dangers as well, especially if you’re riding your motorcycle in poor weather conditions like rain.
Motorcyclists are nearly 30 times more likely to suffer fatal injuries than automobile drivers, and this is in the best conditions. The weather, especially the rain, can make riding a motorcycle even riskier. There are some people who enjoy riding in the rain, while others despise it. No matter which group you fit into, there are some steps you can take to make riding in the rain less risky and more fun.
1. Wear the Right Gear
The first thing you need to ensure that riding in the rain is tolerable is to have the right gear. This includes wearing a waterproof rain suit, boots, and gloves. Not only should staying dry be a top priority, but you also want to make sure you’re visible.
The rain can make it harder for other drivers to see you. Therefore, when you’re picking out your waterproof gear, try to find something that is bright. You might also consider getting a rain suit that has reflectors on it to make you even more visible.
You want to make sure you can be seen, but you also want to make sure you can see. Having an anti-fog visor and breath guard can help with that. If you want to get really fancy, you can even look for a helmet with an electric defrost function to ensure you can see the road no matter what the weather throws your way.
2. Be Wary of Road Surfaces
As roads get wet, they can become dangerous, and certain spots are more treacherous than others. You’ll want to avoid smooth, shiny surfaces when it rains, as these could lead to an accident. Items that fall into this category include:
- Painted lines
- Tar snakes
- Manhole covers
- Metal plates
Some of the other things on the road you need to be wary of are puddles. These could be deeper than you expect, or they could be hiding potholes. Should you happen to see rainbow swirls on the road, avoid these at all costs. They are more than likely oil spills that make the road incredibly slick. If you are unable to avoid going over any of these surfaces, don’t brake hard or accelerate.
3. Give Yourself Some Space
Since rain can make it challenging to stop quickly, it’s recommended that you increase the amount of space between your bike and any vehicles in front or around you.
You’ll also want to slow down and give yourself more time. This can reduce the chances of getting into an accident and being seriously injured or even killed. Slowing down also gives you the opportunity to find the right line so that you can avoid any hazardous road surfaces that might be in your way.
4. Stay Calm
Riding in the rain comes with a certain level of stress, and the tenser you get, the more chances you’ll have of making a mistake. You may also overreact if an issue arises, which could mean that you accelerate or brake too hard, which could lead to an accident. Staying calm will ensure you are focused and make good riding decisions.
Enjoy Yourself on the Open Road
Getting on the open road to ride your bike and enjoy your freedom as much as possible means that you might run into inclement weather, including rain. Whether you love it or hate it, having the right equipment and mindset when riding in the rain will keep you safe and reduce your chances of getting into an accident.