Motorcyclists have plenty of reasons to get out and enjoy the sunny weather this summer, as temperatures have mostly been higher than the norm throughout the country in 2012. But what many riders underestimate is that the beautiful weather has a tendency to bring out more than just motorcyclists.
Deer and Wildlife
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there are approximately 1 million deer-motor vehicle accidents in the United States each year. These unfortunate crashes result in approximately 200 fatalities, 10,000 injuries and $1 billion in property damage.
Wildlife are a danger during the summer because the transition between summer and fall is typically mating season. Bob Found, a biologist from the University of Alberta in Canada, says late October through early December is mating season for deer, which may explain why so many more of the animals are roaming the roadways towards the latter half of the summer.
Potholes and other Road Work Hazards
Summer is also a popular time for road maintenance projects, which means there are more holes in the asphalt and gravel on the ground than any other time of the year. When the weather is clear and there is no rain or snow on the roads, riders naturally assume that means the roads are clear.
Paying attention to road conditions could be the difference between a safe afternoon ride and a tragic motorcycle crash with serious injuries or a fatality. Do yourself a favor and make sure to keep an eye on road conditions at all times, even if you don’t see construction crews in the area.
Hills and Sharp Turns
Though speed limit signs are pretty straight-forward, many people underestimate or overlook the role of the suggested speed limit signs. These signs are common just before sharp turns and hill crests and although they only represent the suggested speed, they are there for a reason.
For example, if a highway with posted 60 mph speed limit begins to approach a hairpin-like turn to the right, it would no longer be safe for a motorcyclist to continue at the posted speed. Typically, a suggested speed limit sign would be posted just before the turn to alert riders that 35 mph is the suggested speed for that particular turn.
Freeway Entry- and Exit-Ramps
Merging ramps on the freeway can create a lot of confusion for motorists, especially those with multiple lanes on popular freeways. In some states, motorcyclists are legally allowed to split the lanes and drive between cars, which can make entering and exiting the freeway even more dangerous.
It is always best to stay in one lane and double-check before changing lanes while entering and exiting the freeway. Staying in one lane means less moving parts and double-checking your blind spot will ensure that you didn’t miss one of the vehicles that is already on the ramp.
Motorcycle Accident Attorney in Washington State
Riding a motorcycle during the summer days can be a lot of fun and exciting in the State of Washington. However, there are a lot of frequently overlooked obstacles that typically accompany the season, and it is important for riders to keep these simple tips in mind. It could be the difference between an enjoyable summertime ride and a serious injury from a motorcycle accident. If you have been injured in a motorcycle wreck, call the Davis Law Group at 206-727-4000 to schedule a free consultation with an attorney today.