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Here in the Pacific Northwest, keeping our motorcycles in the garage when it rains just isn’t an option. When would we ride? Here are some tips to help you ride more safely in wet weather.
Eagle Leather’s expert sales people can help you find the right gear. But it’s up to you to check your tires. If they’re slick, stay out of the rain until you can replace them.
Keep it smooth—be smoother on the throttle and easier on the brakes. Try to keep relaxed. Lean less and brake earlier. Rely on your rear brake more than usual because you can recover if your rear wheel slides, but not so much if your front wheel skids. Double your following distance so you have time to brake if need be. In an emergency, pump your brakes to avoid hydroplaning. Watch out for vehicles entering from driveways, alleys, and intersections.
Watch for slippery spots—wet leaves, manhole covers, railroad tracks, gravel and sand that have washed onto the road, even the painted surfaces of the roadway can all put you into a slide. A rainbow on the road signals an oil slick—it’s a danger signal. If it’s raining hard, wait an hour or two until the roadway is washed clean. Of course, a drizzle just makes stuff wet.
Don’t drive through puddles. Who knows what’s under them? You know it’s a hole—it might be shallow or six feet deep. And never drive into running water. The force of moving water is intense and the water level can rise in the blink of an eye. You can be swept away and drown.
Be careful at stoplights. Don’t run the yellow because you might very well have trouble should you need to swerve or brake. Oily pavement is more likely at intersections because vehicles stop there, and oily pavement gets really slick when it’s wet. And when you’re stopped at a red light or stop sign, watch for traffic coming up too fast behind you. Be ready to react if the vehicle starts to slide.
If it’s thundering and lightning, get off the road. The reason the odds are against people being struck by lightning is because most people stay indoors during thunderstorms. Being out there is not a good thing. And for goodness’ sake, don’t pull over under a tree!
And finally, slow down. Experts recommend that you cut your speed by ten to twenty percent. Going a little slower can change an emergency to an avoidable hazard.
Rain or shine, at Eagle Leather we’re ready to help you find the gear you need, in the size that fits, to suit your budget.