How to Ride Safely in a Group with Other Motorcyclists

Hitting the open road with a group of friends can be an exhilarating experience. However, new and seasoned riders can feel uncertain about the expectations and courtesies involved in group rides.

To ensure your safety and that of your group members, it is wise to go over the rules before you ride together. Keep these safety tips in mind when you ride in a group.

Prepare Your Motorcycle

Check that all your motorcycle parts are in good condition before you set out on your ride. Make sure you top up the gas tank and charge your cell phone to a full battery.

Carry a first-aid kit and toolkit in the panniers, pillion, or top box. This ensures you and your group members are prepared for accidents and emergency roadside repairs. Put on a helmet, wear protective clothing, and wear eye or face protection.

Have a Pre-Ride Meeting

Your group should discuss the length of the ride, planned stops, and the strategy for the ride. You should also learn about each other’s riding experience before going on a ride so seasoned riders can supervise the less experienced.

Your group should choose the leader and sweep rider from the most experienced riders. The leader stays in front of the group, knows all the riders’ skill sets, and watches out for the group in case of traffic and roadway hazards. The sweep rider stays at the back of the group to ensure no one is left behind during the ride.

Remember Your Hand Signals

Make sure everyone understands how to communicate while riding by discussing beforehand hand signals to use when on the road. When riding, the leader can signal the front of the group, and they can pass the message on to the rear. 

Your leader may also use a hand signal for slowing down: the left arm straight out with the palm facing down. To signal other riders to speed up, the lead can use their left arm straight out with the palm facing up.

Stagger Your Riding Formation

Although the group should stay together, never ride side-by-side in the same lane. This ensures you have enough room in case you need to turn to avoid an oncoming car or roadway hazard.

Put your group in a staggered formation, with the leader on the left side of the lane. The second rider should stay to the leader’s right, at least 1-second apart in distance. The rest of the group can follow this pattern, so all riders are appropriately staggered.

For groups trying to follow each other on curvy turns or in poor weather, a single-file formation with at least a 2-second following distance can help keep them together. This also allows riders ahead of you to have extra space to catch up with the group.

Stay Aware of Each Other During a Ride

Keep a steady pace and pay attention to your surroundings and the other members of your riding group while riding. Follow the same speed in tight turns and corners as you would on a straightaway, keeping the pace fun for everyone.

When approaching a turn or a busy intersection, watch for signals from the leader and other group members ahead of you. A leader can indicate to the group whether it is safe to pass behind a slow-moving vehicle if the group is stuck behind it. Stay alert and be ready to switch lanes quickly without causing a collision.

What to Do if You Crash into Another Motorcycle

If you get into an accident with another motorcyclist, these basic steps can protect your legal rights to compensation that you’ll need to cover your repairs and medical costs.

Here are the steps you should follow:

  • Stop right away and pull over to the side of the road.
  • Check for any injuries and call 911 immediately for emergency assistance.
  • Get the other rider’s contact information, including their motorcycle license number.
  • Exchange insurance information with the other rider so you can file a compensation claim.
  • Take pictures and videos of all motorcycles involved in the accident. Write the names and contact details of witnesses, including the other members of your group, who may have seen what happened.
  • After your accident, speak with the experienced St. Louis motorcycle crash attorneys at Cofman Townsley about your legal rights under these circumstances.

You may know or be friends with the person you were riding and collided with, making it awkward to file a claim. However, it is important to remember that in almost all cases, the money to cover your bills is coming from that rider’s insurance, not from their personal bank account, and you have a right to compensation for your medical bills when your crash wasn’t your fault.

A Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Can Help You

Setting up communication rules and following these safety tips can help ensure your group members are ready for the road. But if you get into an accident anyway, a personal injury attorney can help you get the compensation you deserve for your injuries and other damages.

Contact our law firm to schedule a free evaluation of your case today.