Practicing good intersection awareness is one part of riding that can’t be put-a-side for another day. From day one you when you take that initial cruise by yourself on that shiny new scooter, to the older rider just able to get the kick-stand up, we all need to have and use intersection savvy. Among the statistics are the reasons we need to be cool and use our head and eyes to constantly scan:
1. Almost half of accidents occurred at intersections.
2. The most common type of two-vehicle crash is when the front of the motorcycle strikes the side of the passenger vehicle – i.e. a left-turning driver violating the riders Right-of-Way and the motorcyclist smashing into the passenger’s door in an intersection.
Tip 1. When approaching an intersection in heavy traffic be ready to swerve or brake; remember that brake and swerve maneuver you did in the parking lot at riders class. Now you know why.
Tip 2. Cover your front brake lever to shorten your reaction time in a questionable intersection. That impact might not happen if you can get the brakes working early.
Tip 3. At a stoplight stay in first gear, check your mirrors frequently, and be ready to move out if that car approaching from behind doesn’t appear to be stopping. Use the cages around you to evade a rear impact at a stop by going between them or around them, use this as a last resort and only in case of doom.
ALR Road Captain, Post 1 Omaha, Neb.