How to Avoid the Dangers of Riding in the Dark

A lot of motorcycle riders don’t like riding in the dark; this is a concern for even the most experienced of riders.  However, there are some tips that you can use if riding in the dark is a must.  By using the following advice this can help make riding in the dark safer:

  • Increase your vision:  You can do this by making sure that your headlights are properly adjusted.  Read through your owner’s manual to obtain this information or go to a local bike dealer.  My ensuring you keep your headlight clean and free of moisture or other occlusions, you will greatly increase your night time vision.  A little dirt, dust or condensation can have a major impact on how well your headlight works.  It is also good advice that you should check how old your bulbs are, as they get dimmer as they age.  The most sensible thing to do is replace the bulbs every year or two, especially if you use the motorcycle often.
  • Change your driving style: When you are riding in the dark you have make sure you change your driving style.  This means making sure you increase the distance between you and the other drivers on the road.  By keeping a safe distance you are giving yourself time to avoid hazards and unknown corners.  We also advise that you drive your motorcycle slower than in the daylight as this will help to judge speed and distance in the dark.
  • Plan your journey: Before even getting on the bike you should firstly plan the journey that you are going on, making sure that you work out how long you’re going to be on the road travelling.
  • Wear appropriate clothing: Day or night you should always wear high visibility and warm clothing.  This is due to the added risk that the weather can change quickly.  By also adding fluorescent strips to the side of the bike this will help other drivers to be able see you when you are out on the road at night.
  • Don’t drive when tired: Although it may seem obvious not to drive any vehicle when you are exhausted, this is particularly true when riding at night, as it can make you feel even more tired than if you drive in the day, which will lesson your reaction times.

It is important to always try to plan any journeys in advance, and find as much information as you can about the weather and road conditions.  Riding your motorcycle in the night can be fun and a good experience as long as you are prepared and do all you can to stop yourself becoming another road safety statistic.

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