TOP 5 advice to make your motorcycle more visible on the road
by Miha Ernstschneider STS
Every rider knows that to stay safe while riding a motorcycle, the main and most important thing is to train yourself to the point where you have a full control of your motorcycle and to know its’ limits while cornering, braking and riding in different road and weather conditions.
The next, perhaps even more important thing, is to never trust other drivers on the road and always anticipate their worst decision and prepare accordingly – lower your speed and put the fingers on the brakes. But even when we do all these things, the riders remain an endangered species in traffic. What can we do?
Here are the TOP 5 advice to make your motorcycle more visible on the road:
#5 Vivid motorcycle colours
This one is by far the most obvious one. Every rider likes to stand out and to choose interesting and vivid colour patterns might not only get your motorcycle more attention on bikers’ gatherings but also on the road. Vivid colours attract attention in traffic, and it will make your motorcycle easier to see. A tip: the Human eye is the least sensitive to Blue-ish colours and the most to red, orange, yellow colour spectrum. The combination of colours with different patterns also adds to the better perception.
#4 Stay out of the blind spot
Especially on intersections, take caution, even more, if you are riding behind a car. Do not ride in the blind spot of the car that is in front of you, so the driver will see you when you follow him and will pay attention if you were about to overtake him later. Also, riding behind a car makes you harder to see for the oncoming motorists and the ones that are waiting for the road to clear inside the intersection. Increase your safety distance, not only to be prepared if you would need to brake in an emergency but also to allow more time and space for other drivers to see you. There is nothing more dangerous if a car pulls out in front of you and you are not prepared.
#3 Move within your lane
Not that you would want other people to think that you might be drunk on a motorcycle, but it is proven that the human eye tends to recognise changing patterns easier and faster. Moving within your lane will increase chances your motorcycle and yourself will get noticed by other motorists and will pay more attention. You don’t have to exaggerate and move rapidly from one side to another like a stuntman, but you have the right to ride in the whole lane.
#2 Add some spice with reflective tapes
With a bit of creativity, reflective tapes can look awesome on your motorcycle. They can be added to the design and can be used to emphasise the design lines of your ride. Imagine a super model with a bit of glitter – if it’s done right, it’s awesome 😉 But there is also another positive side to it – reflective tape can increase your visibility, and you can use it anywhere on your two wheeled mistress – make her every curve stand out from the rest and make sure you attract anyone’s attention.
#1 Xenon, LED, HID, light modulators, spot lights – and what is a visibility triangle?
I’m sure all of you know the difference and the benefits that the new light technology brings in comparison to the classic light bulb technology. But even Xenon, LED and High-Intensity Discharge (HID) systems can have a better effect if you place them correctly. Riders often enhance frontal visual appearance by adding spot lights to the front of the motorcycle and together with the headlamp, they create a visibility triangle that visually widens you frontal exposure and as a result, increases the chances that other motorists will notice you and your bike. With the headlamp only, a single light source makes it more difficult to assess the distance and the approaching speed of a rider that with the visual triangle light configuration. Light modulators can additionally increase the visibility since the changing light patterns are easier to notice since the human eye is more sensitive to movement and light intensity differences – the exact function of modulators.
Many riders also said that »loud pipes can save lives« – I have no argument against that except that in many countries, the volume of the exhaust is regulated and can end up even in high penalty charges and even your license plates can be taken away by the police. Many would like to argue, and a lot of heavy words were spoken, but at this moment we have to accept the law. Therefore I wouldn’t recommend removing the muffler from your exhaust, even if I find it a good idea.
Stay focused, look ahead and ride safely!