We’ve all seen the bumper stickers warning us to “look twice and save a life,” but even for the most cautious drivers, a motorcyclist can appear to come out of nowhere. Awareness of popular Denver motorcycle routes, plus adherence to a few basic safety tips can help you avoid a tragedy.
Popular Motorcycle Roads
Like cars, motorcycles can go just about anywhere, so safe drivers should anticipate motorcyclists everywhere they drive. Long, open stretches of road and scenic routes are especially popular, but you can also expect to find motorcycles as part of your daily commute. Some of the most popular motorcycle routes in Denver and surrounding areas, particularly for groups, include:
- Coal Creek Canyon from Denver to Nederland
- Southbound Highway 85 through Sedalia
- 285 over Kenosha Pass
- Trail Ridge Road to Estes Park
- Peak-to-Peak Highway
- I-70 through Denver
Safety Tips for Drivers
Seeing a motorcycle in your rear view mirror can be a nerve-racking experience on a narrow road, but the following safety tips will help you avoid injuring a motorcyclist:
- Always double-check your blind spot, where a motorcycle can easily hide.
- Remember that motorcycles are often closer than they appear; their small size can obscure their location and their speed.
- Motorcycle turn signals are not self-canceling, so a blinker might just be something a biker forgot to turn off; never tailgate.
- Bad weather can make it difficult for motorcycles to stop, so leave a safe distance between your car and a motorcycle.
- Don’t race to run through yellow lights, and avoid rapid lane changes, particularly around motorcyclists.
- Never engage in road rage confrontations.
- Obey the rules of the road, and remember that motorcyclists have the same rights and duties as drivers.
Safety Tips for Motorcyclists
In most car-motorcycle crashes, it’s the motorcyclist who is injured. Taking responsibility for your safety can help you avoid misfortune, so follow these tips:
- Always wear your helmet, and check it regularly for cracks or defects. If you’re in an accident, replace your helmet.
- Only go on roads appropriate for your skill level; a new biker has no place on a windy Denver road.
- Consider taking a safety course by the Motorcycle Safety Foundation.
- Invest in anti-lock brakes.
- Avoid rapid lane changes, and don’t speed around cars to show off.
- Don’t get into aggressive road confrontations.
- Maintain a safe distance. Stopping your bike can be harder than you think, and some drivers make rapid – and ill-advised – maneuvers.
- Invest in full-body safety gear, such as knee and arm pads. Doing so can help you avoid a serious injury if you fall or are forced off of your bike.
- Always obey the rules of the road.
It can take a bit of extra effort to be a safe motorist, but that extra effort can save you from a horrific accident. Defensive driving for both motorcyclists and drivers is a key step toward making Colorado’s roads safer for everyone.
If you have been involved in an accident, McDivitt Law Firm’s skilled motorcycle accident lawyers may be able to help. Fill out our confidential and secure form to receive a FREE case evaluation.