Motorcycles are quite different from a traditional automobile. You’re on two wheels instead of four, riding on it instead of driving it, and you’re exposed to the elements without a means of any overhead protection. Aside from the obvious physical aspects, motorcycles can be a means of daily transportation, just like a car, truck, or SUV. These bikes have evovled over the years and now incorporate some of the features you would find in other vehicles. One thing that hasn’t changed is the use of hand signals. As a licensed driver, it is already required to know some of the basic hand signals but motorcycle riders have quite a few that can be used when riding solo or within a group. Granted, most motorcycles do have the proper indicator lights but it is still wise to be familiar with the hand signals. You never know what unexpected situations you may end up end. Your signaling lights may fail and you may be unaware of the problem. Using hand signals in conjunction with your indicator lights regularly, will ensure that you will always have a back up.
Hand signals are great for not only riders to know but also any other motorist who share the road with them. If you are in a vehicle that is trailing a motorcycle, you need to know what they are trying to tell you. They can be stopping, turning, or warning you of a situation up ahead. A good tip to know is that all hand signals are used on the left side of whatever vehicle you are on or in. Drivers in the United States, drive on the left side of the car. If a motorcyclist is signaling, it is easier to see the movement then possibly overlooking it on the right side.
Over the years, there have been other hand signals created and used by motorcyclists. Sometimes groups have their own secret signals aside from the basic universal ones. Most of the time, these are just used among the riders in that group and the universal hand signals are still used to signal other motorists. Either way, we all have to share the road with each other. Being able to communicate with each other can make our journeys much safer for all motorists, regardless of the vehicle.
Motorcycle Legal Foundation: (https://www.motorcyclelegalfoundation.com/motorcycle-hand-signals-chart/)
Riding in a Group: https://www.permit.bike/riding-in-a-group/