Staying safe as a motorcycle courier
Posted by Howard Trott on Friday, May 4, 2018 Under: Motorcycle Couriers
Significant numbers of motorcyclists, including those working as a courier driver / rider, continue to suffer serious accident-related injuries. Some of those injuries would have been less severe had appropriate protective gear been worn.
Today, only riders above the age of about 60 will be able to remember the time before crash helmets were legally required. Their introduction helped achieve a massive reduction in the number of serious head injuries arising as a result of motorcycle accidents.
Unfortunately, though, it’s still possible to see riders who seem to be unaware of the fact that helmets are just one part of the safety story. Other components of rider protection may not be legally required but they’re highly advisable if you’d like to reduce your chances of injury in the event of an accident.
Wear Leathers / Synthetics
Statistically, the more you ride your bike, the more likely you will be to suffer an accident at some stage. That applies whether you’re using your bike for recreation or as a motorcycle courier.
One of most common forms of injury arises from abrasion. Don’t make the mistake of assuming this is the same as a ‘graze’. If you hit the tarmac at high speed the results on your skin could be horrific unless you have adequate protection.
That’s why all-embracing leathers are important. They should be double or triple stitched and well fitted to your body size and shape. Don’t take another rider’s cast-offs that are a less than good fit and avoid using second-hand leathers that show signs of accident damage.
They should carry the “CE” approved mark.
If you have ethical objections to leathers, there are now some very good and hi-tech synthetics available.
Remember - jeans and t-shirts on bikes might look good in films, but in reality they’re a disaster waiting to happen.
Another area where serious injuries can arise is that of your skeletal trunk – i.e. your ribs, hips areas, shoulders and so on.
Here the problem arises because impact at velocity can cause breaks and fractures of your bones. That’s why modern technology has come up with body-armour that fits around some of your more vulnerable bones, but perhaps most notable your spinal column.
Some such armour might be integrated into your leathers, while other options may be worn separately on top – such as back protectors.
Look into this area sooner rather than later.
True, this sort of technology, like leathers, isn’t cheap, but if you’re engaging in work as a motorcycle courier through a company structure, you may be able to get some tax offsets against the cost involved as a legitimate business expense.
Other common types of injury after a motorcycle accident are those associated with the feet and lower leg.
You can hugely reduce the risks these by wearing appropriate motorcycling boots. These should be well above your ankle, have thick and rigid soles and be triple-stitched as well as bonded. Although some people advocate using boots with metal inserts, many experts argue against that - pointing out that metal plates in boots have been associated with severe injuries to the foot.
Again, it’s very important to be sure that your boots fit well and preferably aren’t somebody else’s cast-offs you’ve just squeezed into to save money.
Ideally, these should be tough enough to protect your hands whilst being sufficiently flexible to facilitate good control.
Finally, one of the cheapest and most effective safety measures – visibility! It can save your life and it’s cheap.
Use appropriate high-visibility equipment, straps and fluorescent bands. Being out and about on your bike as a motorcycle courier at night whilst being largely invisible to other road users isn’t advisable!
In : Motorcycle Couriers
Tags: staying safe as a motorbike courier