India is one of the biggest automotive markets in the whole world. The number of two-wheelers in the country as compared to the number of four-wheelers and there’ nothing surprising in that. Many people prefer two-wheelers to cars for obvious reasons including ease of manoeuvrability in congested metro cities as well as hassle-free parking. However, better road manners are something that still needs to be worked upon. Our fellow countrymen are willing to cut corners to either reach someplace faster or to transport the entire joint family to the market and back. Here are a few of those quirky characteristics of Indian motorcycle and scooter riders that jeopardize everyone’s safety on the road.
Riding on the wrong side of the road
One of the most adamant issues on our roads is the issue of driving on the wrong side. Some do it in order to get to a place faster while some to avoid a busy intersection and sometimes just because they’re bored! Even the most high-speed expressways are a daily witness to several riders riding on the opposite side of the road.
Jumping the divider
That’s right, and most of you must have witnessed people jumping their bikes over the divider in order to save a few minutes of commuting. This rather deadly habit should be avoided at all costs as it only results in one saving l++ess than five minutes of their commute.
Two-wheeler riders expert in weaving seems to behave similar to particles in Brownian motion, going zigzag from one lane to another without any fixed direction. One can find such riders in almost every nook and cranny of our public roads while they cut across from one lane to another in a bid to get further ahead on the road, whether it be jammed or moving at a high pace. A dangerous practice that should be avoided at all costs.
Riding on footpaths
Sports Utility Vehicles or simply SUVs are vehicles that can be driven on places other than our Asphalt roads and are known for their go-anywhere ability. Some bike owners, however, have a rather different view about the world which proclaims ‘the world is our playground’. They take their bikes on footpath wherever they can to avoid jams or even small traffic stop crowd. Not only they endanger the safety of pedestrians but also worsen the condition of jams when they rejoin the road ahead.
OVRM? What OVRM?
Call it a sense of style or decluttering the handlebars (really) but many riders remove the rear-view mirrors off their bikes and scooters which apparently makes them look ‘cooler’ in their eyes. Removing the rear view mirrors means there is nothing to warn the rider of the oncoming traffic from behind. A sure shot recipe of encashing your insurance this is then.
Do you Know I do all my stunts myself
These so-called stunters are the worst sort of daredevils you’ll ever want to encounter. They pop up wheelies anytime, anywhere on public sales without any notice and endanger the safety of other road users. Professional stunt riders only perform stunts in controlled environments and with full riding gears but these antic performers don’t consider any of that.
Group Riding Chatterboxes
Riding in a group with your friends or with fellow riding enthusiasts is always a brilliant way to send a weekend or more. However, when a big riding group decides to ride at a slow speed so as they converse with everyone else in the group, then they become a nuisance for every other rider or driver on the road. A single rider making a slight error can lead to a catastrophic accident and other motorists should avoid these large packs of riders for their own safety.
Texting & calling while riding
People riding bikes while using phones is a daily sight on our roads and this often leads to casualties on roads. These distracted riders are very likely to tumble or weave erratically through traffic with one hand attached to the phone and only the other one controlling the bike/scooter. Stay clear of such riders as they are potential life takers on road.
Travelling with over two people on a scooter or motorcycle is a punishable offence under the Indian penal code. However, with Indian families not shrinking in size anytime soon, bikes with three riders sitting on them can be seen across the nation. And it’s not just multiple people on a bike that’s an issue. People overload their bikes with goods so as to avoid multiple trips and these overloaded two-wheelers are at a greater risk of causing an accident or tumbling over.
Helmet or Handbag? Using a helmet to avoid the cops
Helmets are the most essential safety gear when riding bikes and it can create the difference between life and death. Still, riders with a helmet strapped around their arms is a common scene on our roads. Trust us, helmets are not meant to be used like handbags and are also not a tool to avoid police fines. The action of suddenly wearing a helmet after spotting a cop can sometimes lead to these riders losing their balance as they try to fit the helmet on their heads.