Nothing says freedom like RVing and motorcycling! We love having our motorcycle with us as we travel to new places in our RV. If you’re not a motorcyclist, but you do enjoy traveling, camping, and seeing new places, you understand the excitement of discovery and the joy of the open road.
What you might not understand is how you can help motorcyclists travel safely as you share that open road together. I’m not lecturing here. Really! Until you’ve ridden a motorcycle, there’s no way of knowing what you can do as a car or truck or RV driver to help a motorcyclist safely arrive at their destination. Maybe a few tips will help:
- Not all motorcyclists are members of Hell’s Angels. (Remember them?) Sure, there are motorcyclists who enjoy scaring other drivers with their crazy stunts, high speeds, and downright dangerous moves. But most of us are just regular folks who dislike the show-offs as much as you do.
- Remember who you are. You are the one driving a vehicle the size of a blue whale compared to motorcyclists who are the guppies. Pay special attention when sharing the road with someone on two wheels. In an accident, the motorcycle might put a dent in your ride. Your truck could easily end a life!
- Always carefully check your blind spots before making any lane changes. Use your turn signals well in advance so that motorcyclists (along with other drivers) will know your intentions and take any necessary precautions.
- Don’t crowd into a motorcyclist’s lane. While a motorcycle doesn’t take up the space of an entire lane, it deserves to have the entire width of the lane it’s in. Many times on our motorcycle we’ll ride closer to one side of the lane than the other because of road surface issues, visibility, etc. It’s not an invitation for you to lane-share.
- The same goes for a convoy of motorcycles traveling together down the road in staggered progression. Often, the drivers will stagger themselves, one motorcycle driving near the right side of the lane while the rider behind him stays near the left side of the lane. Don’t try to cut into the “parade.”
- Please don’t use your windshield wiper fluid or toss out your cigarette if we’re traveling behind you.
- Allow twice as much space between your car and the motorcycle ahead of you. A motorcycle can generally stop quicker than you can. Your car or truck is more likely to rear-end the two-wheeler.
- If you’re preparing to turn out onto a highway, please check carefully. Most motorcycles have one headlight which makes it difficult to judge distances and speeds as they approach you.
- When traveling down a two-lane road, especially one with curves, it’s nice to slow down in a safe space and allow motorcycles to pass you. Most cars and trucks take curves at a lower speed than a motorcycle can.
- Motorcyclists are especially careful in the rain. Give them room.