Surely you’ve pictured the scenario in the past. You’re out for a nice, casual weekend ride when the weather starts to take a turn for the worse. It was beautiful when you left the house in the morning and now you’re a couple hours away and you feel totally unprepared for the weather that’s rolling in.
Driving in bad weather can be dangerous in general, but operating a motorcycle can be even more risky, if for nothing else than the simple reason that you’ve got 50 percent less points of contact than a four-wheeled vehicle.
If you regularly commute to and from work on your motorcycle, you’ll have to ride through rain, and possible even snow at some point. When this becomes the case, it’s important for you to know how to operate your bike safely in such conditions.
Here are a few tips to help you stay safe and dry when bad weather comes out of nowhere:
If it begins to rain heavily while you’re riding, one of the most difficult tasks will be to keep yourself dry. Water will seep into any seam that it can find, including in between your Windstopper collar and your coat, as well as between your gloves and the sleeves of your coat.
There is no ironclad solution to stay completely waterproof, but your best bet is to make sure that you have your rain gear with you at all times. At the very least, this will help you avoid the undesirable situation of being stuck in a storm with absolutely no rain protection whatsoever.
Beware of Slippery Surfaces
By definition, a wet road is not necessarily a slipper road. However, you should be careful about trying to operate your motorcycle on a wet road in a similar manner as how you’d drive on a dry road. If it hasn’t rained for a long time, oils and dirt that build up on the surface of the road will cause the surface to become extremely slippery.
When you get caught in an unexpected rainstorm, make sure to pay attention for foam on the road’s surface. This is the first warning sign that the road might be more slippery than usual. Approaches to traffic lights are usually especially slippery, as they tend to accrue more dirt and oil from stationary vehicles than other areas of the road.
Dangers That Are Invisible To The Naked Eye
When it begins to rain, your visibility will decrease rapidly depending on the severity of the storm. The rain can effectively hide slippery spots on the road from your eyesight. When your visibility is limited, it’s important that you proceed with extra caution.
There are certain spots on the road that might not look particularly slippery. These spots can easily catch you off guard. The white stripes and arrows on the road are notoriously slick in a heavy rainstorm, especially when they are made of plastic. Painted lines are less of a hazard, but riders should still be aware that they could be more slippery than the rest of the road surface.
Whenever you’re riding your motorcycle, it’s important that you pay the utmost attention for potential risk factors on the road. These suggestions are designed to help you operate your bike safely when you encounter unexpected weather.