Motorcycle riders are far more likely than people in cars to be seriously injured or killed in a crash — but keeping safety in mind can reduce your risk.
There are many benefits to motorcycles — they get great gas mileage, they can make your commute easier, and it’s almost never a problem finding a parking space. As anyone who rides will tell you, they’re also a lot of fun.
But riders assume a lot of risk to get those benefits — according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, they’re 30 times more likely to die in a crash than drivers and passengers in cars. Whether you’re an experienced motorcyclist or you’re just getting started, these tips from the Motorcycle Safety Foundation and Consumer Reports can help keep you on the road, and out of danger.
Choose the right bike — and know how to use it. Riding a more powerful motorcycle than you can truly handle can get you into trouble. According to Consumer Reports, a model with a 250-cc to 300-cc engine is great for a starter or commuter motorcycle, while those with 500-cc to 750-cc engines are good for extended highway riding. Whatever size bike you choose, though, taking a Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) riding course will ensure you know how to operate it properly.
Make sure you’re visible. Even when drivers are alert, it can be hard for them to see motorcyclists (and it’s even worse if they’re distracted). That means you need to help as much as possible. Try to stay out of the blind spots of cars and trucks, and make sure your headlight is always on, even when riding in the daytime. It’s also a good idea to wear bright-colored clothing or add reflective strips to your bike.
Use the right safety gear. Whether your state has a helmet law or not, we strongly recommend that you protect your head — studies show riders without helmets are three times more likely to have a brain injury in a crash. You should also wear leather or other thick clothing. As the MSF puts it, “The only thing between you and the road is your protective gear.”
Be safety-minded at all times. This can mean any number of things, from keeping your bike well-maintained to deciding not to ride when the weather is bad. Both of those things are good ideas, of course. Perhaps most important is driving defensively, because at least one study shows that in the majority of car-motorcycle accidents, car drivers are at fault. You need to be hyper-alert and prepared for sudden lane changes, being cut off and more.
“Born to be wild” may be a phrase forever associated with motorcycles, but don’t take that to heart when it comes to safety. Let your hair down and enjoy the ride — just use some common sense to make sure you’re around for the next ride, too.
Reposted with permission from the original author, Safeco Insurance®.
As crowds swell at the beach, in parks, and even on roadways, it all makes for some challenging driving conditions. More people are out and about, whether on foot, bike, or skateboard, or by car, motorcycle, or RV, increasing the risk of an accident. And, the summer heat isn’t exactly kind to your vehicle.
Still, there’s no stopping the allure of a summer drive. To help keep yours safe, keep your attention on the road and on your surroundings, as well as on these safety tips.
Summertime Safety Behind the Wheel
Just like winter, summer has its own set of seasonal hazards that require your complete attention as a driver. Here are some to be particularly mindful of:
Road Trip Safety
A road trip with family and friends can make a memorable summer for both the right and the wrong reasons. Make it the right reasons with some careful planning and driving. There will be plenty of time for fun once you reach the campground, resort, or cabin.
There’s no better time to be on the road than when the sky’s clear and the sun’s shining. We wish you safe travels and a wonderful summer!
For more information, visit the Safeco blog.
It’s a bit of a tradition for many fathers to go on and on about the knowledge they’ve gained over the years, whether it’s about history, family stories, financial wisdom, or just plain random facts — like how that building over there used to be the old hardware store.
This isn’t a bad thing, of course; it’s part of what makes dads so great. But if you’ve ever wanted to turn the tables on him, now’s your chance. Use these facts and figures about Father’s Day — and about dads in general — to show off some arcane knowledge of your own!
The history of Father’s Day
There are a couple of different origin stories for Father’s Day, and both go back more than 100 years. According to several sources, the first observance was in 1908 in Fairmont, West Virginia, where a woman suggested that her church honor all the fathers who were killed in a mining accident the year before. However, the event never spread outside the city.
A year later, in Spokane, Washington, Sonora Dodd heard a Mother’s Day sermon and thought there should be a day for fathers as well. Spokane celebrated its first Father’s Day in 1910 on the third Sunday of June.
It wasn’t until 1966, though, that the day was recognized with a presidential proclamation. In 1972, President Nixon signed it into law — nearly 60 years after Mother’s Day became official.
How much do we spend on dad?
In 2017, the National Retail Federation noted, Americans were expected to spend $15.5 billion on gifts for Father’s Day. That’s a significant increase over about 10 years ago, when we spent “only” about $9 billion.
What does he want to do for the holiday?
Not much, according to a Zagat survey: More than half of fathers said they just wanted to relax with the family. (And 14% said the best gift would be leaving them completely alone!) So if you’re planning to take your dad out for Father’s Day, you might want to think again.
Do you know how much your dad is worth?
We’re not talking about his job, or about the value of being a good dad (you can’t put a price on that, after all). But you can put a price on the work he does around the house. Insure.com does that each year, and in 2017, the average dad’s household duties were worth more than $26,000 (based on wage data for those jobs from the Bureau of Labor Statistics). The highest-value work? Cooking (worth about $1,800 a year), chauffeuring kids around (about $7,000) and helping with homework (more than $11,000).
The most prolific father of all time
However many kids your father has, we’re willing to bet it’s nowhere close to the record. Genghis Khan, founder of the Mongol Empire, is said to have fathered as many as 2,000 children — according to genetic data, he is an ancestor of 0.5% of the entire world’s population.
Too bad Father’s Day wasn’t celebrated until about 700 years after he died.
Whether a dad knows it all, or just thinks he knows it all, Father’s Day is still his day. So, enjoy the barbecue. Tell some old stories. Share some laughs and celebrate. Because he’s more than just a dad — he’s your dad.
Reposted with permission from the original author, Safeco Insurance®.
Top image by Flickr user Virginia State Parks used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 2.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.
Hurricanes are strong storms that cause life and property threatening hazards such as flooding, storm surge, high winds and tornadoes. Preparation is the best protection against the dangers of a hurricane. As forecasters track a hurricane the terms “hurricane watch” and “hurricane warning” will be used often. It is important to know the difference:
What Should I Do?
What Supplies Do I Need?
What Do I Do After A Hurricane?
Let Your Family Know You Are Safe!
If your community experiences a hurricane or any disaster, register on the American Red Cross Safe and Well website available through RedCross.org/SafeandWell to let your family and friends know about your welfare. If you do not have Internet access, call 1-866-GET-INFO to register yourself and your family.
Click here to download a Hurricane Safety Checklist provided by the Red Cross.
Click Here for How To Prepare for Hurricane Safety!