How do you prepare for a ride on your motorcycle? Many a motorcycle accident victim has been caught without the appropriate safety gear and training, making the consequences of a crash more severe than it might have been otherwise. Taking the right precautions before you ever get on your motorcycle could make a major difference in the outcome with your interaction with a negligent driver.

First, motorcycle riders are urged to remember to don the right protective equipment before getting on their bikes. Most important is a helmet that complies with Department of Transportation regulations both nationally and in Connecticut. Many riders do not realize that most motorcycle crashes occur when they are traveling at 30 mph or slower — a helmet can cut injury rates in half in those instances. Helmeted riders are also three times more likely to survive a crash, no matter how fast they are going. Face or eye protection are also considered a crucial element of your protective ensemble, in addition to a general protective clothing setup.

In addition to protective gear, motorcycle riders are encouraged to know their bike. Choose a motorcycle that is right for your riding level, whether you are a beginner or an advanced rider. Before using your motorcycle, read the manual thoroughly and be familiar with the machine’s controls. Examine the motorcycle for safety before each ride, and make sure that you are maintaining your vehicle. All of these safety precautions can decrease the likelihood of a motorcycle accident on the road.

If you do get in a crash, it is important to know that you do have legal rights and options. A negligent driver should be held accountable for causing you injury, no matter how severe. You may be able to collect damages from this at-fault driver if you suffer a head injury, spinal cord injury, or broken bones in a crash. Motorcycle accident victims deserve financial compensation for their injuries, pain and suffering, and other civil claims.

Source: Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles, “Motorcycle Operator Manual,” accessed Aug. 11, 2015