The weather has warmed up and the snow has melted away. That means that the motorcycles have been uncovered in garages across Connecticut, and riders are stretching their legs, donning their leather, putting on their helmets and hitting the road.

Motorcyclists have been waiting for months to really enjoy a ride, but that also means that millions of drivers have been traveling the road for months basically without having to keep an eye out for these vehicles. Suddenly, they are back on the roads and the risk of a motorcycle accident has jumped up once again as drivers don’t adequately look for the bikes – especially while making left-hand turns.

A lot of accidents happen when the driver of a car is distracted or fails to look for motorcycles when pulling out of a driveway, switching lanes or turning left into a parking lot. Staying off of the cellphones, fixing the radio before engaging the vehicle and other distraction limiting precautions should be taken by drivers.

While a lot of the focus is on the drivers of cars making the roads safer, there are some things that motorcycle riders can do to help. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration said that gear can make all the difference. Covering up skin with padded clothing, sturdy footwear and of course a helmet can at least help minimize some damage should an accident occur.

Traveling at safe speeds and driving a proper distance away from other vehicles with a well-maintained bike can help provide the rider with a little more reaction time to other drivers’ negligent mistakes.

Source: Times Union, “It’s ‘left-turn’ accident season for motorcyclists,” Matthew Hamilton, June 6, 2013