Charles Chips In

  Hi Lee:

 Some of the tips may go against generally accepted guidelines but they worked well for me.
#1 rule in my book is making sure that you do a full safety and maintenance check before leaving for a ride, long or short. Fluid levels, tire pressure and condition and an inspection of the brake rotors are a must. You don’t want a bike that underperforms in terms of handling and safety nor do you want to be stranded in the middle of nowhere.
#2 tip. If you must ride next to a car in traffic, resists sitting in a position that is parallel to the middle, make yourself as visible as possible by aligning your body with the rearview mirror. This eliminates the blind spot risk and makes you very visible.
#3 tip. Don’t get angry, some cagers feel the need to use the windshield washer, throw the cigarette butt out of the window and other garbage while you follow them. Instead of getting upset, change lane if possible, pass them if possible, pull over and cool down for a minute. The car always wins and chasing them down, making gestures and other unpleasant things will only cause the car driver to get upset or scared. Either way he will drive in an aggressive manner and you, the rider, will be at risk.
#4 tip We all overestimate our riding abilities and at times, in pursuit of the extra adrenaline shot, we ride as if we had exclusive and safe use of the road. Most riders get injured courtesy of other bad drivers and road hazards. If you are confident taking a turn at 50MPH, please don’t take it at more than 49MPH. Always leave enough agility for the bike to take evasive maneuvers with ample safety margins.
Charles A. Ambrosecchia