Motorcyclists – Carrying a high responsibility

As a motorcyclist and road user, we seem to have a great responsibility for every other road users safety and the care of their vehicles.  How this might be the case, you might well ask.  We are invisible and only of a slight irritation to many out there on the road, plus in need of dire eradication if you listen to some.

Making sure cars don't get damaged.
Making sure cars don’t get damaged.

As in the above scene, we realise that the car driver takes no responsibility to make sure the motorcyclist is safe from their bad driving, it is purely the responsibility of the rider at all costs to ensure no damage occurs to the drivers car.  In some circumstances, we might fail in this and still hit the car or lock up our brakes and end up on the road in front of some other innocent car driver, that finds they have the annoying problem of a unplanned speed bump.

Saving that car from damage
Saving that car from damage

Completely unaware of the near destruction of that invisible motorcyclist and how close they came to having their paint scratched, some drivers will drive off as though nothing occurred.  They don’t even give a thanks that we saved their precious car from being scratched, such a thankless responsibility we have.

We are often seen as aggressive and having death wishes, simply because we ride a motorcycle and when our lives are put in danger we might become slightly abusive , swearing and in extreme cases some direct the anger at the car of the driver.  When you have your life put at risk on a daily basis from drivers that just don’t pay attention or just don’t look, you have the occasional lapse of reasonable thinking.

Other responsibilities that seem to be placed on us are, ensuring mobile phone users see us and pay attention, clearing a clear path for tailgaters, often having to break some law so that we can safely get out of their way.  One reason we have this huge responsibility is that many road users fail to take the responsibility of creating a safe environment for all other road users. This does include some motorcyclists as well sadly, which gives the rest a bad name.

In a car or truck, a slight lapse of concentration and if happen to have a minor crash, quite often only your vehicle will be damaged, on a bike the chances are more likely severe injury or death.  In a car or truck , the road surface having potholes, ripples, oil/diesel etc., is a minor consequence, on a bike it can be a major consequence if hit them.

As a car driver you can help make our lives that bit safer by not tailgating us, stop trying to share the same lane, look twice before pulling out and as you are merging into another lane turn your head to check your blind spots.  Another big way is to STOP being distracted by using your mobile phones while you are driving, this includes doing things like reading, makeup, shaving etc.

**Please note: Some of this was written with a satire note to it, the fact remains though that as road users, we that ride motorcycles are invisible to many drivers. We have to try gauge what every other road user is doing, going to do and try evaluate constantly a safe emergency course to take.


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