Safety is important whenever you’re riding a motorcycle, but especially during large-scale events like Daytona Bike Week.
With endless waves and miles of golden sand, it’s no wonder over 10 million visitors flock to Daytona Beach every year. The weather and scenery have made Daytona Beach the perfect spot for various food festivals, outdoor music events, and none other than the word famous Daytona Beach Bike Week, an event that attracts half a million attendees. As these visitors pour in, the roads quickly become crowded, and taking safety precautions becomes increasingly important.
Motorcycle Safety Tips for Bike Week
Daytona Beach Bike Week is a major event for motorcycle owners. Over the course of the 10 day “week”, Daytona Beach bustles with motorcycle races, street vendors, parties, and live music.
Wear Protective Gear
If you’re properly insured and over 21 years old, you aren’t legally required to wear a helmet in Florida. But as the old adage goes, it’s better to be safe than sorry. If an accident does happen, the proper headgear can protect your head from skull fractures as well as painful cuts and scrapes that can leave permanent scarring.
Leather is durable. It’s effective in preventing or minimizing road rash, but it’s not the most comfortable material to wear in the Florida heat. Synthetic materials like kevlar are also protective and they’re more breathable. Regardless of what material you choose, picking one that’s reflective will make you more visible to other drivers.
Maintaining adequate tire pressure and treads creates the right amount of traction between your bike and the road. If you rode a long distance to Daytona Beach, take a few minutes to stop and see how your tires are holding up on the trip. Many gas stations have pressure gauges and air stands, so it’s a convenient safety measure to take if you’re already filling your tank.
Being surrounded by fast and exotic motorcycles can tempt bike enthusiasts to speed, especially if they’re riled up after watching an official race. But it’s especially important to adhere to the posted limits during Bike Week.
The event draws in thousands of out-of-towners who are not necessarily familiar with the layout of the city and the local traffic laws. That’s why vacationers tend to drive unpredictably, stopping and slowing down suddenly to locate their destinations. You may have to adjust to them quickly, and that’s harder to do if you’re speeding. Also, many beachgoers and shoppers travel on, crossing the street frequently. Driving carefully at a reasonable speed will help to protect them.
Daytona Beach allows drivers to access the beach with their vehicles in certain areas and timeframes. If you plan to take advantage of this perk, remember that the speed limit in those areas is just 10 miles per hour.
In Florida, it is illegal to transport a passenger on a motorcycle that isn’t designed to carry a second person. Your bike has to be equipped with foot rests for the passenger, and the seat must be able to hold both of you without shifting your position. Eye protection is also mandatory.
If you’re riding with passengers under the age of 21, keep in mind that they’re required to wear a helmet.
If you’ve never ridden your motorcycle with a passenger before, Daytona Bike Week probably isn’t the best time to cut your teeth. Riding with additional weight alters how you balance as well as how quickly you accelerate and brake. It’s best to get a hang of this before riding in a high traffic area.
Don’t Drink and Ride
Drinking and driving in any vehicle can be dangerous, even deadly. It’s especially irresponsible on a motorcycle. You simply don’t have the same protection as you would in a standard vehicle.
The Daytona Beach Police Department is well aware that bars are packed during Bike Week. They’re on the lookout for drunk riders. Even if no one gets hurt, a DUI can cost you. A DUI sets back first offenders at least $1,000, and jail time is a possibility. A third DUI is considered a felony regardless of whether anyone is killed or injured.
What to do in Case of a Motorcycle Accident
After an accident of any kind, the health and safety of all parties involved is the number one priority. Check for injuries then call 911. They can dispatch an ambulance if necessary and alert the police. Even if the accident is minor, it’s important to have the accident documented. A police report can help establish who the at-fault party is.
Exchange information. In Florida, you’re legally required to provide the other parties involved with your name, address, and registration information. It’s also useful to gather contact information from witnesses in case you have questions at a later date.
In the hustle and bustle of Bike Week, it’s easy to forget the finer details. Taking photos of damages as well as street signs and the general surrounding area can serve as evidence and can help you keep the facts straight.
Do I Need a Lawyer for a Motorcycle Accident Case?
If you’ve been involved in a motorcycle accident, especially if you’re visiting from another state, hiring a personal injury lawyer can alleviate the stress and guesswork while you’re navigating your case. At Eberst Law, our attorneys have successfully overseen automobile accidents of many kinds, including countless motorcycle accidents. We will confidently and relentlessly represent you until we’ve secured maximum compensation. For a free consultation, contact us online or by phone at 772-225-4900.