Riding motorcycles has become a way of life for many in Texas and across the country. Others simply use their bikes as an occasional hobby, riding only a few hundred miles each year. No matter how much you ride, there is a chance of a serious or even fatal motorcycle accident every time you turn the engine over and hit the road.

Many motorcycles are the result of another driver’s actions or inactions. However, some motorcyclists do not practice safety riding and end up in an accident. Here are a few safety tips meant to help riders become safer on the roadways, as well as to ensure riders are obeying the laws governing motorcyclists in Texas.

— Texas has a helmet law for all motorcyclists under the age of 21. Those over 21 may ride without a helmet, but according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, helmets can reduce fatal motorcycle accidents by 37 percent and brain injuries by 67 percent.

— Avoid riding in the center of a lane, as this is where a buildup of debris and oil may build up.

— Never ride if you have consumed alcohol.

— Consider taking a safety course in order to brush up on your riding skills.

— Other vehicles should look twice when changing lanes or at intersections. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, this is a common place for serious motorcycles accidents.

If you have been injured in a motorcycle crash that occurred because of another person’s negligent or reckless actions, you have a right to pursue compensation through a Texas civil court. An experienced personal injury attorney can provide additional information on how to seek compensation for your medical bills, pain and suffering and other losses or damages.

Source: Texas Department of Transportation, “Motorcycles” Sep. 25, 2014