Tom Wolf, Governor Leslie S. Richards, Acting Secretary, Department of Transportation

General Tips for Riding a Motorcycle Safely

Motorcycle safety is a growing concern not only in the Commonwealth, but nationwide. More and more people are turning to motorcycles as their primary mode of transportation. When ridership increases, risk increases. Below are a few tips that can improve your level of safety:

  • Be Safe.
  • Conduct a pre-ride check to identify any mechanical defects that could jeopardize your safety.
  • Be Visible.
  • Signal your intentions
  • Make sure your headlight works and is on day and night.
  • Use reflective strips or decals on your clothing and on your motorcycle.
  • Flash your brake light when you are slowing down and before stopping.
  • Dress for Safety.
  • Wear a D.O.T. approved helmet and eye protection.
  • Wear bright colored clothing, over the ankle foot protection, long pants, long-sleeved shirt, and full-fingered gloves.
  • Use Common Sense.
  • Keep a safe distance from other motorists and give yourself enough time to react to dangerous situations.
  • Use lane positioning to be seen; ride in the part of a lane where you are most visible.
  • Avoid weaving between lanes.
  • Ride Unimpaired.
  • Don't ride when you are tired or under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.
  • If someone has had too much to drink, intervene.
  • Be Courteous and Responsible.
  • Respect other drivers.
  • Don’t speed; know the local traffic laws and rules of the road.
  • Be Prepared. Practice.
  • Develop your riding techniques before going into heavy traffic.
  • Know how to handle your bike in conditions such as wet or sandy roads, high winds, and uneven surfaces.
  • Find out more about Pennsylvania’s free Motorcycle Safety Program.
  • Read fellow riders’ safety tips and share your own at www.LiveFreeRideAlive.com.
  • During spring riding, be cautious of gravel buildup from winter road maintenance on the edges of roadways and near intersections. Riders can report hazardous conditions due to gravel along the road to 1-800-FIXROAD.

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