Protecting Against Liability When Riding During Difficult Weather

Posted on: 4 November 2016

Motorcyclists have a common reputation for causing accidents and generally being disruptive. This can put a cyclist on the defensive when it comes to riding during extreme weather conditions. Whether it's a winter snow or the fall rains, motorcyclists have to be extra careful to protect themselves against the potential for liability.

Always Give Other Drivers a Wide Berth

Other drivers can be unpredictable. There are many inexperienced drivers or careless drivers that become extra dangerous when the weather is bad. Many accidents occur not because of the cyclist but because the cyclist assumed that other drivers could see them and would react accordingly. The worse the weather gets, the farther away you should stay from vehicles. As a general rule of thumb, a motorcyclist must be a defensive driver rather than an aggressive driver.

Look Up Weather Conditions Before Leaving

Weather can change on a dime, especially during seasonal changes. You should always look up the weather conditions for your entire trip -- otherwise you risk getting caught in a hail storm or a blizzard on the way back. As a corollary to this, consider having a plan B in the event that the weather gets too bad; find a place to leave your bike and call for a ride. If the weather is likely to turn bad, you may not want to go at all.

When In Doubt, Slow Down

Most motorcyclists are extremely talented and skilled when it comes to riding. Unfortunately, this sense of confidence can lead to driving faster than weather conditions will allow. Potential hazards such as black ice can appear from nowhere and can easily cause an accident when driving at high speeds. During bad weather, the "speed limit" is not what you should be following: you should be driving only fast enough to maintain complete control. 

Keep Contact Information On You

You never know when you're going to need a lawyer. An accident happens very quickly and could leave you no time to think at all. You should know exactly who you're going to call in the event of an emergency -- it's worth it to make prior contact with a motorcycle accident attorney to establish a relationship.

Sometimes the worst happens and a cyclist simply isn't prepared. During these situations, it's usually best for the motorcyclist to immediately call their attorney -- often before their insurance company. An attorney will be able to advise them on the right course of action.