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Motorcycle Safety: Avoiding Common Road Hazards

It is important for motorcycle riders to understand the potential road hazards that can lead to serious and catastrophic accidents. No matter where you ride, there are lots of roadway hazards that present more of a danger to motorcyclists than those who drive cars and trucks.

Common road hazards include uncovered or unmarked potholes and manholes, uneven asphalt, debris or gravel in the roadway, substandard maintenance of overpasses and bridges, excessive sand or dust on the road, wet and icy roads due to inclement weather, and vehicles entering the roadway from side streets and driveways. All of these increase the odds of motorcycle riders being involved in an accident. 

If you were recently injured in a motorcycle accident that was caused by a roadway hazard, we can help you prove liability, and pursue compensation for your medical bills and other damages. No matter where your accident took place, contact us today to schedule your free consultation with one of our nationwide motorcycle accident lawyers.

Most Common Road Hazards for Motorcycles

It is vital for motorcycle riders to exercise caution and awareness while riding since you could encounter numerous dangerous conditions such as uneven surfaces, slippery surfaces, bridge joints and expansion joints, road debris, incorrectly marked lanes, railway crossings, and bad weather.  

The leading roadway hazards for motorcyclists in the United States are:  

Slippery Road Surfaces

No matter the cause, when road surfaces are slippery, they can pose multiple dangers to motorcyclists. OilChemical and oil spills are one of the more serious causes of slick roads since they areas where these spills occur can remain slick for an extended length of time.

In addition to spills, rain, ice, and other types of inclement weather can also cause roadways to be slippery. One example of rain causing a road hazard is hydroplaning which takes place when standing water causes a vehicle’s tires to lose contact with the road, resulting in an inability to steer and a complete loss of traction. 

Uneven Roadways

Uneven roadways can be extremely hazardous for a motorcyclist. Although passenger vehicles can drive over them without losing control, a motorcycle rider must exercise extreme caution when driving over any uneven road surfaces. If a pothole or other road hazard is present, riders need to decrease their speed as much as possible in order to reduce the odds of an accident. 

If uneven asphalt is unavoidable, it is crucial to drive straight over it while maintaining a reduced speed. Regrettably, accidents caused by uneven roadway surfaces happen frequently and often result in serious injuries that demand expensive and ongoing medical care.  

Bridge Joints and Expansion Joints

Bridge joints and expansion joints often go unnoticed by drivers but they play a critical part in ensuring the safety of our bridges and roadways. They provide paved structures with flexibility at essential spots by making it possible for the concrete to shrink or expand when the temperature changes, thereby preventing cracks and other structural damages. Without bridge and expansion joints, many parts of our nation’s infrastructure would require more repairs more often.  

That being said, these gaps also pose a distinct danger for motorcycle riders who encounter them. Any significant change in direction or speed could cause the bike to become wedged in the space between joint pieces, so it is important that riders keep their tires facing forward, perpendicular to the joint until they have completely cleared it. Those who do not run the risk of getting stuck.  

Roadway Debris

Another leading cause of motorcycle accident injuries and deaths is debris in the roadway. In this case, debris refers to any foreign objects in the road such as tools, tree limbs, boxes, logs, and rocks that are clearly not supposed to be there. When riders fail to notice hazardous roadway debris, especially while traveling at high speeds, it raises their chances of serious injuries and fatalities. 

Lane Splitting

Motorcyclists should never drive between parked cars and moving traffic. Not only are they putting themselves at risk of crashing into the door of a parked vehicle as it opens but they could also be in danger if a driver who is not paying attention suddenly decides to exit or enter the flow of traffic. Lane splitting, although legal in several states, is also dangerous for these reasons. To ensure their safety, motorcyclists need to make sure they stay in their lane and do not attempt to ride between moving lanes of traffic or between parked and moving cars. 

Railroad Crossings

Railroad crossings are one of the most overlooked dangers among motorcycle riders. In this scenario, the biggest risk for a rider is getting one or both of their wheels stuck in the tracks. Even a tiny miscalculation can lead to severe injury or death if they are ejected from their bike.  

If a railroad crossing has timber between the lines, the scenario becomes even more dangerous. Wood makes road conditions worse since it gets slick when it is wet. Motorcyclists should always approach crossings with caution and avoid making sharp turns or speeding when driving over them.  

Inclement Weather

In adverse weather conditions, riding a motorcycle presents unique challenges. In addition to not having the safety features that those who drive cars take for granted, motorcyclists are also fully exposed to the elements. Even a strong gust of wind could throw a rider off balance and cause an accident. 

Likewise, heavy rain could cause a motorcycle to slide on the asphalt, making wet roadways hazardous for both riders and those around them. In order to avoid motorcycle accidents caused by inclement weather, it is best to avoid riding when roads are wet, snowy, icy, or any other condition that increases your chances of a collision.  

Talk to a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Today

If you were injured in a motorcycle accident and are seeking legal advice, contact Local Accident Reports as soon as possible. If your accident was due to someone else’s negligence, the nationwide motorcycle accident lawyers at Local Accident Reports can investigate your accident and help you obtain the compensation you deserve. Call us today to schedule your free consultation.  

Our thoughts are with everyone who has been affected by this accident.

If you or a loved one were injured in this incident, you should speak with an attorney as soon as possible. Having your case evaluated by a lawyer immediately will ensure your rights are protected. The first step is to request a police report, and we can do that for you. 

Contact us today at


to get the help you deserve. 

Local Accident Reports is here to provide you with valuable resources after you have been injured in an accident. In addition to your free police report, you can also schedule a free consultation with one of our personal injury attorneys right now to find out more about pursuing compensation. If you any have questions at all about your legal rights following an accident, please don't hesitate to call. 

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Note: These posts are created solely for the use of Local Accident Reports. We have not verified the information in these posts as the information is gathered from secondary sources. If you have personal knowledge that the information contained in these posts is inaccurate, please contact Local Accident Reports immediately so we can make the necessary corrections or remove the story.

Disclaimer: We are providing this information to the general public as a resource to use in the event you or a family member are injured in a similar incident. Every effort is put forth to honor the victims of accidents, and hope the information presented helps others avoid the same type of accidents in the future. The photos depicted in these posts are not representative of the actual accident scene. Please contact Local Accident Reports at (888) 657-1460 to be connected with an attorney in your area who will answer any legal questions you may have.

Harvey Barbee is our chief content writer who also has nearly 15 years of experience as a practicing attorney. Combining his skillset as a strong writer along with his in-depth knowledge of the legal system, Harvey uses his talents to write informative pieces for law firms about a variety of topics that affect individuals. He enjoys helping people find creative solutions to their legal problems. When he is not writing or practicing law, Harvey enjoys golf, gardening, and spending time with his family in North Carolina.

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