A full 8 percent of U.S. households owned at least one motorcycle in 2018, the highest number ever recorded. Some ride as a hobby, others consider the vehicles an essential form of transportation. There are some things to consider when riding in a group to ensure the safety of all.
This is a good time to ensure everyone knows the ride’s duration, route, any stops that will be made, and the experience and skill level of the riders.
Motorcycles should be fully fueled and in good condition. Carry a cell phone in case of an emergency and anything else that might be needed. At least one rider should carry a first aid kit.
Ensure everyone in the group knows the hand signals for a road hazard, speeding up, slowing down, passing, or stopping.
Lead and Sweep
The most experienced rider should ride alone at the head of the group. The sweeps ride at the back to ensure no one falls behind or gets separated. Have a plan for rearranging the grouping if someone has to leave the ride early.
An optimal size for a group ride is 7 people. If there are more riders than that, break people up into smaller subgroups, each with its own lead and sweep.
Keep it Tight
Riders should stay together, but leave sufficient room between each other to brake or swerve if needed. Stagger the riding formation so people aren’t riding directly side by side.
Breaks are Important
Be sure to take frequent breaks to prevent fatigue. It’s an opportunity to eat, rest and prevent muscle cramps.
Things to Avoid
Be sure to wear any safety gear that can help protect you. Don’t ride side-by-side, show off, or be misleading about your level of experience and skills.
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