Summer is a great time to take your motorcycle out for a spin, but because the temperature can reach the 90s from June to September in Virginia, some riders opt to wear only a helmet to protect themselves. Although riding with less gear can keep you cooler, it also significantly increases your risk of suffering a serious injury during an accident.
Regardless of how far you’re going, how much traffic you’ll encounter, or even how hot it is outside, you should always wear all the gear, all the time. Here’s how your equipment protects you when you ride:
- Your helmet—The most important piece of safety equipment protects you from head and brain injuries. Full-face helmets can also protect your eyes, mouth, and face during a crash.
- Your jacket—Whether it’s made of leather, nylon, Kevlar, or another material, your jacket protects your torso and arms.
- Your gloves—Your hands and fingers are highly vulnerable during a crash, and heavy-duty gloves protect them.
- Your pants—Road rash can be severe on the legs and thighs, and thick riding pants can reduce or even eliminate it during crashes.
- Your boots—Some motorcyclists crash feet-first, and without boots, they may suffer severe injuries to their ankles, feet, and toes.
Above all else, you need all of this gear to protect you from negligent and careless drivers. Although motorcyclists are plentiful during the summer, drivers aren’t always looking out for them. That puts riders at significant risk of being struck by vehicles.