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High Visibility (Being Seen)

Posted on Sep 19, 2011 11:21am PDT


One of the main reasons, if not THE main reason that cars causemotorcycle crashes, is that the drivers simply don’t see motorcycles. I’ve represented hundreds of motorcycle riders who have either been struck by cars or cars pull in front of the motorcycle causing the motorcycle to “t-bone” them. In most instances, the driver says: “I just didn’t see him.” Not much consolation if you’re the one laying on the ground injured.

It seems that one of the latest changes in motorcycle clothing is high visibility clothing. A number of years back, Harley Davidson started selling orange t-shirts. Made sense since the Harley colors are black and orange. I can’t imagine how many black t-shirts I have. I’m sure you do to. Well, orange is certainly easier to see on the road. Now I see that BRIGHT GREEN on t-shirts. Even Harley sells them with their logo on them. I remember being at a rally once and someone asking me before they arrived, how would they find me? I gave them the famous line “Oh easy, look for the guy with the black t-shirt on.” It appears things are changing, and for the better. The more highly visible you are on the street, the less likely some car will pull into your path. Common sense.

Another way to be seen is extra lights. My Road King has 3 lights in front. My Low Rider, only came with one light. It now has 3. I installed 2 smaller high intensity lights on the front. I’d rather someone say “Wow, that guy has some bright lights”, instead of “Oh, I’m sorry I didn’t see you, I’ll call an ambulance.”

Too many car drivers are eating, talking on their cell phones, texting, dressing, putting on makeup, reading the paper or a hundred other ways of not paying attention to their driving. It’s up to us, as motorcycle riders, to do whatever we can to increase our visibility and stay safe.

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