Stay Safe When Driving Your Motorcycle in the Rain
It's fun to ride a motorcycle out in the open. It's not fun, however, when you've got rain in your eyes while riding one. Still, that's not to say that riding in the rain won't be enjoyable. All it takes is some proper equipment, the right kind of gear, and correct driving practices--and you're up and ready to go.
Here are some ways you can stay safe when driving your motorcycle in the rain:
Don't trust puddles
That harmless-looking puddle might be your worst nightmare--so beware.
When it comes down to it, rainwater can drastically change not just road visibility, but also road surface. This is especially true after a storm, when concrete, dirt, and other junk are dislodged from holes and crevices and come above water. When this happens, then you can't see if there's a deep hole there somewhere. They can be extremely dangerous and difficult to see when it's covered by water and dirt. This goes the same for incomplete manholes and pits that are being dug out during road constructions.
To stay safe, try to let the road dry out first before you drive your bike on the road. If not, then make sure your tires have the right pressure to handle wet roads--and the occasional accidental dips your tires might be subjected to when it drives over an unsuspecting hole.
Watch out for the rainbows
We all know that wet road reduces traction and grip. If your tires don't have enough treads on them, then there's a possibility that you can skid while driving. This is more true if you see gasoline residue on the surface.
The good news is it's easy to detect, since they appear as attractive rainbow swirls mixed in with water. Be careful when you see them, since they're more slippery on the road. And make sure your tires have enough treads on them to help displace water away from the tires.
Wear the correct gear
It's important to wear the correct gear when driving your bike. Goggles are important--they help keep water from coming into your eyes. And invest in waterproof garments--from your jacket down to your shoes or boots, pants, and gloves.
It's also important to make these outfits highly-reflective. Driving in the rain, especially at night, can be dangerous. It's easy for vehicles to overlook you and your motorcycle, so wearing reflective clothing makes you easier to see even when it's dark.
Practice correct (and slow) driving
Don't brake or accelerate suddenly--brake slowly and accelerate slowly as well. That way, you can ease in your tires and let them work more effectively in building traction and grip on the road's surface. Also make your transitions slow and smooth--doing it too fast can make your tires slip and lose balance.
A good rule of thumb when driving in the rain is to do things much slower. And this rule becomes even more important when you drive at night.
Bring extra towels, gloves, socks, small microfiber clothes, and even an emergency kit with you whenever you can. Really, you never know when an extra pair of gloves is needed--or even just a piece of band-aid to patch up a splinter.