Motorcycle crashes happen for all kinds of reasons. Sometimes, the biker doesn’t notice something in front of them, forcing them to put their bike down to avoid a crash. Other times, it is clearly someone else at fault for the wreck.
One of the most frequent reasons provided by people in bigger vehicles causing motorcycle crashes is that they didn’t notice the motorcycle there. Obviously, this is an issue with the other drivers on the road, as you can’t control how people split their attention.
Still, there are ways that you could help make yourself a little bit safer. Are you letting your personal sense of fashion keep you from being as safe as possible on the road?
Too many motorcyclists reject the appearance of high-visibility gear
In a series of focus groups involving those who ride, researchers found that there was one predominant reason that bikers gave for not using reflective or brightly-colored gear on their bikes. That reason was concern about their appearance.
The motorcyclists did not like the way those bright colors or reflective strips affected their public perception. Many cyclists talked about going to public places, like restaurants, after a ride in gear that they might find embarrassing.
Some people worry that bright colors would make them look less cool on their motorcycle or like they belong on a different kind of vehicle. Larger, more classical bikes often have a darker aesthetic that lends itself well to the black leather and synthetic riding gear so many drivers enjoy.
The perceived coolness of different colors is certainly up for debate. However, there is no question that looking better to other people should not come before your personal safety.
Bikers shouldn’t have to force people to pay attention
In a way, the resistance to reflective and brightly-colored motorcycle clothing makes sense. After all, motorcyclists have the same rights as everyone else to be on the road, and visibility gear wouldn’t really be necessary if drivers just paid attention to the road around them.
Unfortunately, hundreds of motorcyclists every year get hurt or killed by drivers who just don’t bother to look for bikes. Wearing brightly-colored gear can help keep you a little bit safer, but it won’t completely eliminate your risk of a motorcycle crash caused by an inattentive driver.