person on motorcycleOwning a motorcycle is both exciting and fulfilling for millions of Americans. These bikes can be both fun and critical to your transportation needs. Still, being a biker means you have to do so safely. If you don't, you put your security and that of other drivers at risk. Where do your risks arise, and what penalties will you face in the event of driving infractions? What can you do to make yourself a more responsible rider? At the end of the day, motorcycles are motor vehicles. You must protect them and operate them as the heavy machinery they are. If you fail to do so, you'll likely face penalties. These might cost you.

Why Motorcycle Driving Risks Exist

Whenever you set out on a ride, you'll face safety risks. A vehicle accident might happen at any time. That could damage your bike, hurt you and harm others. Therefore, you have to be safe when you ride. By doing so, you'll reduce the chances of causing unfortunate accidents. You'll also likely reduce your own cost burden in the event of a problem. Conversely, by riding in irresponsible manners, you expose yourself to safety risks. Not only that, you stand to harm others through your actions. If you do, you'll often face financial penalties. These might impact your budget, and even your ability to operate a motorcycle.

Items that Make You a High-risk Operator

Every rider has a responsibility to use their bike safely. What unsafe practices should you try to avoid when you ride?

  • Failing to carry insurance: Most states require motorcyclists to carry bike insurance. That's because by carrying coverage, you'll create a financial safety net for yourself and others.
  • Receiving multiple tickets or points: If the police stop you, that means you have broken the law. Tickets, fines or license points might result. You'll become more of a risk in the eyes of the authorities as a result.
  • Driving on a suspended license: Having a revoked license means you shouldn't drive. If you drive anyway, you will face penalties.
  • Having accidents:If you have an accident, your chances of having another one might increase. That increases risk.
  • Not wearing protective gear: Georgia requires all bikers to wear helmets. If you don't, you'll face penalties which could signal higher driving risks.
  • Operating a malfunctioning bike: You might not face legal penalties for a malfunctioning bike. However, simply operating one might put you in harm's way. Motorcycles are much more sensitive than the average car. Therefore, riding one that doesn't work properly will likely increase security risks.

The Penalties of Driving Mistakes

The more numerous your operating risks, the more your penalties will often prove. Some of these might include.

  • Loss of driving privileges: Significant accidents, or many driving violations might lead to the revocation of your license. You might also face vehicle impounding and other penalties. The privilege loss might prove temporary or indefinite.
  • Higher insurance costs: Your insurer will base your policy costs and coverage eligibility upon your operating risks. Therefore, if you pose higher risks, you might not be able to get certain coverage. You also might have to pay higher premiums for your coverage.
  • SR-22 penalties: Biker who commit certain offenses, like DUIs or driving without insurance, might face the SR-22 requirement. An SR-22 form comes from your insurer to prove that you have auto coverage. You file it with the state DMV and must keep it attached to your insurance for a couple of years. You might have to pay more for your insurance for the duration of the penalty.
  • Other lawful penalties: Depending on your offense, you might face considerable losses. For example, probation and jail time might result from the most severe infractions.

Improving Your Operating Risks

You don't want to face any potential penalties when you ride your bike. The safer you act, the better your experience. You'll likely feel much more secure by employing these practices.

  • Carry appropriate motorcycle insurance coverage: Motorcyclists need a specific bike insurance policy. Talk to your agent about how to establish the appropriate financial limits. Keep in mind, you'll likely need more protection than the state's minimum requirement. You'll also need motorcycle insurance, not an auto policy.
  • Use safety equipment: Wear a motorcycle helmet and safety gear at all times. Often, you need more than just a helmet.
  • Take a driving course: Motorcycle safety courses can help you learn safe practices. They'll help you learn how to react to hazards behind the wheel. They'll also make you more aware of potential roadway hazards. Your risks of accidents might drop.
  • Keep your bike in good condition: The better care you take of your bike, the lower your risks of catastrophic failures and accidents. Receive regular maintenance, and be on the lookout for developing hazards.

With a little care, you can prove a safer biker. By doing your part, you'll make the roadways safer for you and others. Your insurance and local authorities will likely thank you for this commitment to safety.

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