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7 Safety Tips to Keep In Mind

We’re not joking when we wrote the title above. Just last year, Biketoberfest 2013 claimed the lives of four riders. More fatalities were recorded in the years before that, with 2011 having the highest number of fatalities with six Biketoberfest-related deaths. This is of course aside from the major and minor injuries.

It’s probably human nature – when we’re having fun, we tend to think less of our safety and the safety of those around us. However, safety should always come first because no amount of fun will ever be the same worth as a human life.

If you’re attending Biketoberfest or Bike Week, here are seven safety tips that can spell the difference between life and death.

1. Don’t Drink and Ride
Aside from the thousands of riders who flock to Daytona Beach during Biketoberfest or Bike Week, the celebration will not be complete without free-flowing booze. It’s definitely a perfect venue to have a few drinks. Bars offer promos on drink with live entertainment. It’s almost unnatural to refuse a can of beer or a cocktail if you’re in Daytona Beach.

However, this free-flowing alcohol does not give anyone license to drink and ride. Every year, lives are lost due to drunk driving and celebrations such as Biketoberfest magnifies this. If you're drinking, make sure to sober up first before hopping on your motorcycle. Or just leave your motorcycle somewhere and just commute to wherever you are staying... Take a taxi, call a friend or designated driver.

2. Always Wear a Helmet
According to a research conducted by the New York City government, 74% of all fatal motorcycle related injuries involve head injuries and that nearly all bikers who die (97%) are not wearing a helmet. This is in stark contrast compared to only 3% of fatalities among bikers who wear a helmet.

A helmet can save your life. No matter how much of a daredevil you are, wearing a helmet is not only the responsible thing to do. Even if you’re traveling short distances, still wear your helmet because the next accident might just be waiting just around the corner.

3. Follow Safe Riding Distance
Hundreds of bikers flock to the streets of Daytona Beach during Biketoberfest and major thoroughfares can get cramped. No matter how you want to be in the thick of the action so to speak, always maintain a safe distance from other bikers.

This has a number of benefits. One, in case there’s an accident, it won’t cause a domino effect since riders are far apart. Two, there’s a lesser chance for collision. Three, properly spaced motorcycles will give bikers a chance to wiggle their way out if any unforeseen accident happens.

4. Follow Speed Limits
During these events, the air is pulsating with adrenaline and exhilaration. It’s difficult not to get excited. Sometimes, bikers get super excited that they throttle through Daytona Beach without any regard to the imposed speed limits.

Speed limits are there for a reason. Break it and it may cost you more than just a speeding ticket – it may actually cost you your life and you might even be responsible for taking the life of someone else.

5. Be Visible
The cheering crowd, the bustling streets, the different bike events offerings of Daytona Beach. Clearly, a lot of things are going on during this festivity and riders can easily get distracted while driving. Next thing you know, you are sideswiped by another rider.

One way to prevent this from happening is by drawing attention to yourself by increasing your road visibility. You can achieve this by wearing bright clothing such as neon jackets or reflectorized vests.

6. Ride during Daytime
Almost 60% of motorcycle-related fatalities occur at night and it can be attributed to lower visibility. During events such as Biketoberfest, night time can also mean that there are more intoxicated riders and even pedestrians on the road that might cause an accident.

If possible, don’t ride at night. If you want to go out, just go on foot or ride public transport. However, if you do want to bring your motorcycle for a spin around Daytona Beach at night, be extra careful and be more vigilant of your environment.

7. Have the Right Attitude
Not known to many, but most motorcycle accidents are not caused by environmental or physical conditions. It’s actually the wrong mindset of a rider that triggers most accidents on the road. It can be arrogance. It can be temper. It can simply be an utter disregard to his safety and the safety of those around him.

Every time you ride, know that your life and other people’s lives are on the line. You might have a happy go lucky, daredevil approach to life, but you can still satisfy your need for speed without putting yourself and other people at risk.

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