Stay Safe While Riding in Construction Zones with these 3 Riding Tips
Riding season and construction season overlap. When that weather is nice, the road crews are out there fixing up the roads, and you’re out there on your bike enjoying the sunshine and freedom of two wheels.
Unfortunately, construction zones end up being a hazardous place. Not just for workers, but motorists; especially those on motorcycles. Without the balance and protection that a car provides, you and your bike have to pay extra attention.
Know the Laws of Riding in a Construction Zone
Double Penalties – Work zones in Texas come with double penalties if you’re caught speeding. The reason isn’t to bilk you out of your money. The reason is that people tend to whip through these areas without regard to the workers’ safety. By doubling up on the penalty, it encourages people to slow down.
Slow it Down – When you’re in construction zones, slow it down. You will have more time to react to hazards and complications, and if things do go wrong, you’re less likely to suffer fatal injuries.
Know the Hazards to Watch for in Construction Zones
Workers – We don’t really want to call a construction worker a hazard, but sometimes the workers are in the wrong too. Be aware of who is around, and watch in case they enter your lane unannounced.
Equipment – Road work requires a lot of heavy machinery. Sometimes it’s parked in the wrong place; sometimes the operator swings it into the lane you’re riding in.
Loose Materials – Materials being used for construction can spill or become scattered.
Gravel and Debris – Gravel, dirt, and asphalt is used in road construction. Take care if it’s in your lane.
Water – When the road is uneven, water can puddle up. Even the smallest amount can cause you to hydroplane.
Keep an eye out for extra hazards, going slower than normal can help you react in time to avoid them.
Know the Road Transitions in Road Construction
There are some conditions that aren’t exactly hazards. They’re just the process of updating and fixing the road.
Grooved Pavement – When a road is resurfaced, the top layer of asphalt is ground off. The underlying layer has grooves in it to give a textured surface that the new layer will adhere to. This grooved pavement can tend to push your tires around quite a bit.
Uneven Lanes – It’s usually not possible to fix the entire road all at once. So it’s done one lane at a time. The lane that has been ground off to allow a new layer of asphalt will be lower than the other. If you have to cross, know that it will be uneven.
Loose Gravel – Different from the hazard of gravel that was spilled, sometimes gravel stays on the road for a little while (i.e. when chip-sealing a surface).
Herbert Law Group Helps Motorcycle Wreck Victims
When you’re out riding, you know the risks. There are a lot of other motorists on the road, and often they don’t watch out for those on two wheels the way that they should.
Compound that with the hazards of riding in construction zones, and summer-time riding can be dangerous.
If you, or a loved one, have been involved in a motorcycle wreck that resulted in injury or death, then we should talk about what your options are.