Before anything else, let’s get one thing straight here: no one has the right to tell you not to ride a motorcycle. We understand the feeling of freedom that riding a motorcycle can bring, and it’s a much more exhilarating ride than driving a box with wheels. We get it. But you better make sure you have affordable motorcycle insurance, because riding a bike can be pretty risky.
In terms of per vehicle mile traveled, you’re 29 times more likely to die in a crash on a motorcycle than if you’re a passenger in a car.
Here are some facts of life that you should be aware of if you’re contemplating the prospect of learning to ride a motorcycle:
- A flat tire will be a catastrophe. When you get a flat while driving a car, it’s nothing but an annoyance. You can just pull over the side of the road and begin the tedious task of changing a tire. With a motorcycle, it’s not that simple. The sudden flat will cause you to hurl forward from your bike, and that’s not something you can always walk away from.
- The pavement will grate your skin. The result is pretty much the same when you slide on the road. You don’t even have to go that fast and it doesn’t have to be your bare skin. Wear just a t-shirt and when you get into an accident at just 25 mph you can have all the shoulder tissues ripped to the bone. Then every loose piece of debris on the road gets in your wound and all these things will have to be painstakingly removed.
- You really don’t want to hit an animal on the road. When you’re in a car you’re protected by seatbelts, airbags, and crumple zones when you hit a deer crossing a road. On a motorcycle, you just have a helmet and some people are even stupid enough not to wear one.
Hitting a deer on the road is like being tackled on a football field at 60 mph. That will always cause broken bones, and often death. Even small animals like a dog can be extremely dangerous, since you’ll most likely hurl from the motorcycle at the speed you were going. Then you’ll hit the road and all manners of bad things will happen to you.
- Lots of car drivers are oblivious. Sure they pay attention to other cars on the road. With motorcycles, not so much. Check out the various news reports of car vs. motorcycle accidents, and the car driver usually says they didn’t see the motorcycle prior to the collision.
With these accidents, car drivers tend to end up with minor injuries at the most. That’s not the case with the motorcycle drivers. In any type of car to motorcycle collisions, the mass of the heavier car transfers to the motorcycle as energy. By the way, that energy also transfers to the motorcycle rider, and it doesn’t take all that much energy to break bones.
- You’ll have to worry about highway dividers too. Sure, for cars they very helpful because it keeps them from crossing lanes. On the other hand, motorcycle riders who skid across the road often stop only when they hit something, and often that something is a divider. If he hits the divider and he’s hit by the motorcycle skidding behind him, it’s not going to be pretty.
So yes, it is possible that you can enjoy yourself riding a motorcycle. But then again, it comes with a lot of risks.