Thursday, November 30, 2023


Not a motorcyclist? Then you must read this!

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.


Gail Marsh
Gail Marsh
Gail Marsh is an avid RVer and occasional work camper. Retired from 30+ years in the field of education as an author and educator, she now enjoys sharing tips and tricks that make RVing easier and more enjoyable.



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Michael Galvin (@guest_205052)
1 year ago

Motorcyclists, remember: You do not have a right to ride with bright headlights on all day.

Gene Sannes (@guest_204401)
1 year ago

As motorcycle rider for over 70 years, with experience riding in Europe and Asia as well as in the states and a 12 year motorcycle safety instructor, I’ve seen many stupid people in cars and on bikes. The greatest number of accidents and stupid riding are from people that never took a motorcycle safety course. As the years have gone by, poor attitudes by all drivers and riders has contributed to even more mishaps. No one will say I’m sorry or excuse me. At intersections, don’t just glance each way to clear the view. Take an actual look, not a glance. Ride and Drive safe.

Bob p (@guest_204393)
1 year ago

A good article about sharing the road with motorcycles!

David F. (@guest_204384)
1 year ago

Thanks for sharing, good reminders for all of us, both riders and RV’rs. Plan ahead, be patient, ride like you’re invisible, drive like your Pastor is on board.

Ron T. (@guest_204367)
1 year ago

On a four lane or more highway, you are free to pass me (on either side) at your convenience. On two lane roads, once I notice you approaching from the rear, I will move from the center of the lane to the right to give you a better sight line and maintain a constant speed until you are abreast of me at which point I may actually slow down some to allow you to get out of the oncoming traffic lane quicker, especially if I can see traffic coming.

Bob p (@guest_204394)
1 year ago
Reply to  Ron T.

Most states it actually is illegal to pass on the right but it is seldom enforced, the invention of multi lane roads has conditioned far to many people to routinely pass on the right. You’ll rarely see a truck driver pass on the right due to the unsafe condition, it’s much harder to gage the position on the right side than the left side. Plus with the convex mirrors on the right side of cars and pickup trucks with the words “ objects are closer than it appears” etched into the mirror is a clear warning. Don’t pass on the right!

Drew (@guest_204364)
1 year ago

If you’re riding alone it’s a great idea to stay to the left in your lane to improve your visibility to other drivers. It may even be law in some places. I’m surprised Gail didn’t mention this.

Paul (@guest_204358)
1 year ago

I would add that motorcyclists need to also be aware that no RV can stop as short as they can. If they are confronted with a need to avoid they are best off swerving to avoid – generally a bad idea I know but a lot better than having my 32,000 pounds of RV clobbering you from behind. I know California is the only state where lane splitting is legal but even there it is not allowed at road speeds over 40 mph. I have had to change my shorts when a very loud bike passed me in traffic at 60 mph. His very loud exhaust was not audible to me until he was already alongside and my only possible reaction was to do nothing.
I respect motorcycles when I can see them and they are in proper position in traffic. They need to give us a chance to acknowledge their presence.

wanderer (@guest_204353)
1 year ago

I’ve always been very cautious around motorcycles, give them extra space, etc. Lately I have been cross-country driving, and finding groups where the ‘lead dog’ hugs the center line, to establish dominance I guess. I understand claiming the lane, but not riding with a human body right at the edge of it. A giant grain truck I meet on road clings to the outside line to avoid creating a wind problem with me as we cross, yet the biker insists on staying as close as possible to opposing traffic. This trend is not going to end well.

Ran (@guest_204335)
1 year ago

I am a motorcyclist, and a long time RVer. I understand all the issues here. There are always those who ruin it for everyone else. Think about whats going on right now with homeless RV’s, parking, trash, etc. Those who are hoarding camp spots illegally, MC’s that are h_ll raisers, and ruin it for most. One of my main complaints is that rv’s don’t pull over or let motorcyclist pass them. We’re all in this together. Treat others as you would like to be treated! The human race nowadays is in so much hurry to go somewhere. Just leave earlier if you’re so much in a rush! Have a great day! 🤓 See you on the road!

Bob M (@guest_204342)
1 year ago
Reply to  Ran

As a motorcyclist and RVer. If I’m in the right hand lane, I’m not going to pull over to let someone pass me. I go the speed limit and the side of the road is not always safe to pull over. I also try to keep my speed steady for max gas mileage. If a motorcycle or car wants to pass me then go ahead. Harley riders like their exhaust to be loud. Maybe if the cops did their job and pulled over excessively loud motorcycles. Motorcyclist wouldn’t have loud exhaust.

Jewel (@guest_204331)
1 year ago

I appreciate the attempt to increase awareness. There are rude, inconsiderate drivers everywhere. My concern is that some motorcycle drivers put the burden on other drivers to see them and give room for safety.

The smaller unit should always steer clear of the bigger unit. Yes, if you’re behind a bike, give it room, just like any vehicle should. But many times, we’ve had motorcycles split lanes and even fly up so fast we couldn’t have done anything to stay clear.

When you are driving, especially a big RV, a motorcycle is like a mosquito. Hard to see even if you can hear it. And by the time you figure out where they are coming from, it’s too late to move the RV so the burden falls on the bike.

Gary (@guest_174130)
1 year ago

I know that this article was not intended as a “let’s dump on bikers” session, but,….. my big complaint is bikers (and autos) parking in RV parking spaces. That’s the only place my rig will fit in. And high beams in the daytime are just as blinding as high beams at night.

Paul S Goldberg (@guest_130609)
2 years ago

I am not a motorcyclist, I do have many friends who have ridden for years. I have one pet peeve with the big bikes with loud exhausts. You think you are being noticed, but in my case you often startle me and I worry that I might swerve from the startle reaction. Tone it down and stay safe.

Tom M (@guest_204350)
1 year ago

If they want to be heard they should point the exhaust to the front. Then they can enjoy all the noise too!

Sue (@guest_130426)
2 years ago

I appreciate this article! I don’t drive a motorcycle and learned two new things. #1 don’t use my windshield washer fluid when motorcycles are nearby. Makes sense when I think about it. and #2 Give motorcycles more room because they can stop a lot quicker than my dually truck. Again – makes sense when I think about it. Thanks for sharing!

Michael Galvin (@guest_130405)
2 years ago

I have a motorcycle endorsement.
Dear motorcyclists: Buy a good muffler and stop using high beams.

Carson Axtell (@guest_130416)
2 years ago
Reply to  Michael Galvin

As a long time motorcyclist I agree that loud mufflers are a nuisance and bad PR, and that high beams at night are just asking for trouble. But, even though I ride with the idea that I am invisible to car drivers, I still insist on using my high beams during the day to alert oncoming drivers to my presence. During daylight hours, high beams do not pose a hazard and merely get the attention of potentially distracted or tired drivers.

Bob p (@guest_174104)
1 year ago
Reply to  Carson Axtell

Amen to that, the high beams are getting Mr Calvin’s attention.

Gary (@guest_130430)
2 years ago
Reply to  Michael Galvin

Thank you Michael. Add to that – Don’t park your bike in RV parking spots.

Mitzi Agnew Giles and Ed Giles (@guest_130235)
2 years ago

Not a motorcyclist. My anger is reserved for the automobile drivers who roar up behind cycles and dog their rears more closely than they would another car. If I try to give extra space in case I need to brake, some road ranging maniac will force themselves between me and the car following too closely on the cyclist. I feel like these drivers are setting us- themselves, the cyclist and me- up for a massive chain reaction accident (for whatever reason- wet road, junk in the lane, someone driving into the cyclist from an adjacent lane)and the rider not wrapped in a metal box is the one who will come out worst. I hate interstates more and more

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