Riding a motorcycle in the rain – Safety tips

Riding a motorcycle in the rain – Safety tips

The rain drops trickling down the window pane, the mist, the cool air…, everything is so nice during the monsoon. You may feel so while you are indoors or travelling in a car or bus. But that’s not the case for all. Motorcycle riders have a hard time during the monsoon. They get drenched in the rain, get exposed to the cold air, have to deal with slippery roads and poor visibility! Add that to the case of careless pedestrians and other reckless drivers. All this makes riding during monsoon a risky endeavor. True!

So, how to avoid this risk? If we go by the easy way, the best option is to cover up your bike and leave it in the garage and consider other means of transportation that doesn’t directly expose you to the rain – like the bus, car, train, etc. (there are several options), and take out your bikes after the monsoon. Just kidding! We’d never recommend leaving your bikes in the garage. There’s nothing like the thrill of riding a bike during a torrential downpour! Giving up an entirely convenient mode of transportation is not necessary when we can take some measures to drive safe. Here are the top 10 tips you have to consider:

  • Care for your Tyre as you would for your hear

             Tyres come in direct contact with the road. Wet roads are slippery, hence reducing friction and give a hard time for you to control your two-wheeler. Tyre pressure should be regularly checked once every two weeks. In case of any signs of some wear and tear or cracks, bloats or flat spots, your tyre needs to be changed.

  • Lube the chain

              Two-wheeler chains require frequent lubing especially during the monsoon. While on road, it is not just the water that gets splashed on to them. Along with water, the chain attracts mud and grit too. Chain lubes often have the property that repels water and can protect it during the monsoon. You can get lubricants for your motorcycle’s chain in the range of 200-400 Rupees. Considering that the point is to keep you safe, 200 bucks cannot hurt!

  • Consider waterproofing your motorcycle

             Every vehicle out in the market is waterproofed, but with time, it’s difficult to say how much of it would stay intact! What I am talking here is about the covering for the wires etc. It is possible that some rodent may have nibbled the outer covering of the wires on your motorcycle or they may have just naturally worn out. Whatever the reason may be, there are chances for damages and we cannot take those chances as we ride on road. So be sure to check and get them repaired.

So far, we talked about our vehicle’s safety. Now, let’s talk about us.

  • Gear up to face the rain

              Monsoons are not an excuse to enter your office drenched and dripping wet. Rain coats help keep us and our clothes dry. When you go to buy a rain coat, the market offers products at costs that cover a wide range; from the lowest to the highest. Always remember, it’s the quality that matters and not the figures on the price tag.

  • Puddle! Splash…splash…wreckage!

              That was meant to be both funny and horrifying! Now fun aside, India has been renowned not for the number of roads it has but, the number of potholes each road has! Every rain literally creates new potholes. With the rain water filling them up and forming puddles, it is difficult for one to determine their depth and decide whether what lay before them is just a puddle or a pond. Drive safe. Avoid them!

  • Railway crossing will now be more difficult than before

             Wet rubber and metal surfaces are not exactly best friends. So, when you try to ride through a railway crossing, things will get a bit out of hand if you accelerate after a stop on the crossing. Keep riding along a straight path as much as possible while maintaining constant momentum until you get across.

  • No sudden brakes and make sure you maintain distance from vehicles in front

              As mentioned earlier, wet roads = less friction. That means you have to break harder. Also, leave ample space between you and the other vehicles. During the rains, braking distances are much longer.

  • Maintain your speeds

              The best way to prevent yourself from jamming your brakes all of a sudden is to drive slowly. The benefits when you drive slow are limitless!

    • You get better control of your vehicle
    • You don’t have push the brakes harder when something pops up from nowhere
    • Now, even if you do have someone jump in front of you suddenly, along with the brakes, your legs can help too

See, you are safe. Everyone on the road is safe.

  • The main villain – poor visibility

             Most often accidents happen because of poor or no visibility.  Poor visibility does not just mean that you can’t see the road, but also that your presence on the road is not visible to other drivers. The best way to tackle the visibility problem all face on road is by driving with your headlamps turned on even during the day. During the night, you could wear clothes with reflective material and also use some fine quality reflector strips on the front and rear end of your vehicle. Now that you are visible to the other drivers, let’s see what you can do to see the roads better. Water repellant sprays are readily available in the markets. Using them can help water roll off from you helmet and visor quickly.

Monsoons aren’t that tough and if you be careful, riding in the rain can be safe and enjoyable. Keep in mind these points. And have a happy monsoon!