Riding in the rain can be an awesome experience but also comes with many safety issues. For most bikers the first time riding in the rain usually isn’t intentional but it could be a cool experience as long as you’re ready for it. It’s an unavoidable part of a biker life, and we all have done it at some point in our rides. However, there are some advantages in riding motorcycle in the rain like easy maneuverability, an excellent view of the road and more escape routes from any possibly dangerous situations. Key thing as a biker is to know the basics for rain riding. Don’t let the rain catch you unprepared, so here are a few things you should remember:
1. The most important thing get the right (rain) gear
Helmet – Your visor needs to be scratch free and clear. Visibility is essential and you don’t want to decrease it by using a dark visor.
Boots – Ensure that you have the proper waterproof riding boots.
Jacket, Suit and Pants – Your jacket, pants and suit should be water resistant.
Gloves – Your hands are most susceptible to getting cold, so definitely you should protect them with pair of waterproof gloves.
2. Don’t trust puddles!
You don’t know how deep is a puddle so you should try avoiding them. If you can’t avoid riding through a puddle, hold the throttle steady, keep the bike upright, go over it as slow as possible, and try not to touch the brakes.
3. Slick concrete surfaces
Cars frequently spill oil on the road while moving. The oil rises above the water when it rains, and making asphalt very slippery. You must avoid that colorful rainbows (oil spill) you see on the road, they are not your friend! You should also avoid riding over metal, like drainage covers, manhole covers, railroad tracks, road blinkers…
4. Keep your cool, ride straight and slow
Stay focused, and don’t make any quick moves. Even if you want to reach your destination quicker in the rain, remember this riding faster is not an option. Sharp, brief acceleration, steering, or braking can quickly eat up your good grip. You need to be smooth and gentle.
5. Use rear brakes before front brakes
The rear brakes bring stability to your bike, and front brakes have more braking strength but if you apply only front one you will lose your grip and traction and probably you’re going to fall. Always apply the rear brakes first and use them as much as you can.
6. Keep your distance
Wet weather and the low visibility often cause increased speed variance, which increases risk of falling. You should maintain a safe distance between you and the vehicle in front of you.
7. Stop when it gets risky
If you are having trouble with the road conditions, if they seem too difficult, or it’s just raining heavily, then you should consider stopping and finding yourself something to cover.
8. Ziploc everything you care about and protect your luggage