Many motorcycle riders tend to opt for using Bluetooth units while they’re riding. In fact, many modern helmets come designed with these devices in mind. But what is it about them that makes riders choose them? As it turns out, these devices have many features which help with both convenience and safety…
Bluetooth Units: Why They’re Useful
Practically every smartphone these days comes with Bluetooth options. These allow for them to easily connect and pair with Bluetooth units. This means that you can make use of features on your phone without having to ever pull it out while on the road.
For example, connecting your phone to Bluetooth units will let you get directions from apps like Google Maps or Waze. You’ll also be able to answer any potential phone calls you get while riding. All of this can be done without taking your eyes off the road or your hands off your bike, giving these units a nice added safety element too.
Listen to music
Another nice advantage of Bluetooth units is when using them to listen to music. It can be quite loud when you’re riding on a motorcycle, and standard motorcycle speakers just might not cut it. However, instead of investing in a sound system, you can chose to listen to music through one of these devices.
Streaming services make it easy to just open up a music app, connect your devices, and start listening to music. Also, most of these Bluetooth units have a “priority system”. If you have a GPS app open while playing music, your GPS will always take the priority and cut in to let you know when you’re coming up on the next turn before continuing your music.
Talk to other riders
Motorcycles being loud doesn’t just make it hard to listen to music. It can also be hard to hear or talk to other riders. This can be especially frustrating if you’re riding in a group. However, Bluetooth units can help solve this problem.
Older devices use Bluetooth connections between units to usually allow about 4 riders to remain in touch while within a few hundred feet of each other. However, newer devices use networking, which let’s your Bluetooth connection stay free and increases the amount of riders and distances you can have. While they are a bit more pricey, the added convenience can make them well worth it.
Most motorcycles are good to go out of the box. However, there are a lot of different options out there to customize your ride with. Some of the more popular motorcycle accessories can help you add some personal flare. Not to mention, additional safety features that could become essential in unexpected situations.
Motorcycle Accessories: Keep Your Bike in Order
Audio systems are some of the most common motorcycle accessories riders choose. A good radio and speakers can help you better listen to your favorite music while riding. Furthermore, this means you won’t have to wear headphones to listen to your music, which can be quite risky while riding.
It’s important to know how your new system will mount to your bike. Some will easily allow you to swap the existing system for a new one. Others might need to be mounted elsewhere, like on your handlebars. Make sure to look for a system that won’t be in your way while riding.
Extra lights are another example of motorcycle accessories with an additional safety benefit. For example, driving lights and light bars help add a bit of extra light reach to your bike. These can be mounted on your handlebars or near your headlight depending on the type.
There’s also cosmetic lighting, which can be mounted just about anywhere on your bike. These lights come in a wide variety of colors, and can be individual or full strips of lights. Some come with the ability to cycle through different colors, or flash and blink. Not only do you get some added flare, but you also improve your ability for other drivers to see you.
Motorcycles are often a large investment. Like any investment, you’d want to make sure you keep it protected. That’s why security systems are some of the most recommended motorcycle accessories. Security systems help ensure that your bike stays with you where it belongs.
Additionally, you have a good amount of options here as well. Motion detectors, for example, will sound an alarm if someone is tapering or moving your bike. However, there are also more advanced options, like RFID keyless ignitions and GPS trackers. These give you some added control over your bike, but come at a higher price point.
There’s always room for growth. Driving improvement can happen every day. If we put effort into doing something, we can make it happen. Driving safe not only benefits you, but also your fellow drivers and pedestrians. Here, we will discuss some ways you can improve your driving.
Driving Improvement: What You Can Do
Adjust Your Mirrors
Every once in a while, it’s good to check and readjust your mirrors. Your sideview mirrors can get out of whack from car washes and other impacts. Your rearview mirror can be easily adjusted. This will increase your driving improvement immediately!
The old positions were at 10 and 2 on the wheel, but now more experts are saying to put your hands at 9 and 3. This gives you a better, more relaxed feeling behind the wheel which will help your driving improvement. In addition to being more relaxed, you will also have more control of the wheel. Which, ultimately, means more control of the vehicle as a whole.
Your driving improvement can begin when you understand that sometimes you just don’t need to drive. If you are sleepy or emotional, it can impair your ability to drive safely. If you are feeling at all distracted or tired, keeping off the road is your best bet. You can take a nap or ask someone else to drive. Whatever it is can wait until you feel at your best again!
Take a Class
A refresher driving class, a defensive driving class, or anywhere else you can relearn the rules of the road might help. If you are feeling you need driving improvement, taking a class is an inexpensive idea to really help your everyday life.
It’s the most basic thing you can control in your car. You control how much you are pushing your gas pedal. Your driving improvement can start with just relaxing on the gas. Speeding doesn’t get you anywhere much faster than you would by obeying the speed limit. It also just puts you and other drivers in danger. Speed limits are set to take into account road conditions and traffic patterns.
Driving can already be stressful enough dealing with other drivers. However, you’ll also have to keep an eye out for wild animals too. Animal accidents can be quite scary, as well as costly. That’s why it’s important to know how you can avoid them in the first place…
Animal Accidents: How To Avoid Them
Learn the area
The first step in avoiding animal accidents is to learn what animals are in the area. This is especially important for when you travel. For example, maybe you like to do some fall travelling. However, fall can be a time where there’s more deer around, potentially resulting in more of them on the roads. Knowing this can help you stay alert when you do your driving.
As for your own nearby areas, try to learn the times and areas where animals appear to be the most active. Usually, many are active from dawn and dusk, but many animals are becoming more active at night too.
Not to mention, roads with woods on both sides tend to be popular crossings for animals. In turn, these areas are at a higher risk for animal accidents. Keep these in mind so you can spot some areas which might be popular with animals next time you drive.
Distracted driving already increases the risk of you getting into an accident with other drivers. So, it makes sense that it also increases the chances of you getting into animal accidents too. If your focus isn’t on the road, then you’ll be setting yourself for danger.
Many times, animals can quickly run out onto the road unannounced. That gives you just a few seconds to react. However, if you’re distracted, then you’ll end up with very little to no time to react. Therefore, increasing your chance of animal accidents. That’s why it’s best to avoid any distractions as best you can.
Watch your speed
Often times, the speed limit will be lower than usual in areas with heavy animal activity. It can be easy to brush these restrictions off and pay them no mind. However, that’s just setting yourself up for a potential animal accidents.
These restricted speed limits are put in place for good reason. Going slower will give you more time to react to any animals on the road. It’s better to temporarily go slower rather than get into an potentially-avoidable accident.
Workers in many different fields like to make use of personal headphones. This lets them listen to things like music and can help pass the time. However, they might not be a safe option depending on your job. It’s important to know when wearing these headphones might become a risk to your safety…
Personal Headphones: Risk vs. Reward
Limiting outside noise
Personal headphones can help you block out any outside noise or distractions. This can help when it comes to focusing more on the work you’re doing. However, it could also mean you don’t hear important audio cues around you. This could lead to you accidentally getting hurt because you were unaware of what was happening around you.
Headphones can also have a small noise-cancelling effect on their own. This can lead some to think that they can be used in-place of special noise-reducing headphones or earplugs. However, this is actually not the case. OSHA notes that these headphones aren’t as effective as specialty ones.
Snags and tangles
Another issue with personal headphones is the chance of them catching or snagging on something. This can already be annoying when it happens outside the workplace. However, it could also be quite dangerous when you’re working.
For example, if you have to do a lot of moving around at your job, then your headphones could easily catch on something. This is especially true if your work involves any kind of machinery. Overall, it’s not worth the added risk to wear headphones when doing this kind of work where you want to be as safe as possible.
It isn’t a bad idea to wear personal headphones at every workplace, however. It mainly depends on the job you’re doing. If you work in a more desk/office-type of job, then you might be able to wear headphones depending on your workplace rules. Compared to other office safety risks, headphones probably won’t be to much of a hazard.
Here, headphones can be especially helpful if you have a hearing problem. They can help you hear a bit better if you have to make phone calls or listen to audio. They can also help if you have something like tinnitus. Having something like music or soft noise playing can help those with tinnitus keep their mind off of the ringing.
For most people, an ideal motorcycle ride is when the sun is out and the weather is nice. However, as a motorcycle rider, there might be some times when you’ll have to ride in less-favorable conditions, like the rain. Rainy riding can be challenging, but also very doable…
Rainy Riding: Maintaining Safe Travels
Prepare your gear
Rainy riding means you’ll be facing a constant downpour, and at high speeds. That means that your usual riding gear might not be a good choice for keeping you dry and safe. Instead, you’ll want to get some specialty rain gear to help you handle these special rides.
You’ll want to get some gear that keeps you dry and your grip secure when rainy riding, while also being comfortable. Try to find a good balance between comfort and practicality. Give special attention to your visibility as well. Helmet visors tend to fog up in the rain, so investing in a special clear, anti-fog visor is a good idea.
Ride smoothly & smartly
When you ride in poor conditions, you’ll have to change how you handle your bike to stay safe. Riding faster or more aggressively in the rain will increase the risk of you getting into an accident. That’s why rainy riding involves going more smooth and making smart decisions.
For example, try to handle your throttle more gently than usual, making gradual changes rather than more drastic ones. Also, try to brake more gradually and give yourself plenty of breaking room. Slamming on the brakes while on a wet surface could result in them locking up, and then sending you and your bike into a slide. It’s better to give increased following distance to avoid these issues when rainy riding.
Watch intersections more closely
Intersections can already be quite risky for motorcycle riders. Rainy riding further increases the danger of these intersections. That’s why you should give all types of intersections special attention when the weather is less-than-ideal.
Approach these intersections slowly and cautiously. Keep an eye on other drivers around you, and don’t try to do anything risky like making a yellow light. When you’re stopped, take stock of the cars around you and who might be behind or beside you. It’s important to be aware of what’s going on around you so you can act accordingly.