Brush up on motorcycle safety before hitting the road

Riding season is here and motorcycles are starting to fill the streets of the Okanagan.

All Weather Driving School instructor Dean Clark has been riding for over 40 years and he says as soon as the weather starts to warm up, avid bikers start to get excited about riding. In fact, the school’s first round of motorcycle training sold out in just 24 hours.

“We want to make sure people are safe when they are out there. We start out with a theory course where they are going to spend some evenings at the school going over theory, motorcycle safety, gear, all the stuff they need to be safe when out on the road,” said Clark.

“After they complete the theory course they get handed off to myself here and I do the parking lot where we actually spend 7.5 hours getting them ready to go through their Motorcycle Skills Assessment test.”

Clark says whether you’re brand new to riding or you’re a seasoned veteran on a motorbike, it’s important to go over the fundamentals before getting back out on the road.

And most importantly, this includes practicing your low speed skills.

“It’s always the low speed manoeuvres that are going to mess you up whether it’s class 1 or motorcycle, so I encourage them to get into a parking lot and brush up a little bit on those low speed skills.”

Another thing to be cautious of when getting the bike out for the first time is tire and shock pressure. A bike with a low tire is far more dangerous than a car and can lead to dangerous accidents.

New rider Marcus Hamilton wrapped up his training course on Wednesday, feeling very grateful for everything he learned.

“I know it’s not mandatory in BC, but so far everything we’ve gone over has been pretty good. I would recommend it,” said Hamilton.

According to ICBC, motorcycle crashes significantly increase from May to September, with 212 people injured in crashes involving motorcyclists each month.

ICBC is asking riders and drivers to do their part to prevent crashes and share our roads together safely.

ICBC’s tips for riders:

  • If you’re getting on a bike after a long break, it’s important to refresh your skills before riding again. ICBC’s learn to ride smart and tuning up for riders guides will help you freshen up your knowledge and skills. Practice emergency braking, obstacle avoidance and other core skills in a safe place like an empty parking lot.
  • The top contributing factor for motorcyclists in crashes is distraction followed by speed and rider error/confusion. It’s important to stay focused on the road and drive at a safe speed that leaves enough time to stop or steer out of a vehicle’s path if necessary and reduce your risk of crashing.
  • When you wear protective gear, you’re less likely to be seriously injured in a crash so make sure you wear gear every time you ride, regardless of the weather or how long the ride will be. Buy the best gear you can afford and make sure your helmet is in good condition.
  • Never assume a driver has seen you or will give you the right-of-way, they may not accurately judge your distance or speed. Do your best to stay out of a driver’s blind spot.
  • Use your signals to let drivers know what you plan to do so they can anticipate your next move and react in time.


Office Hours

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Motorcycle Theory

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