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Is it actually wise to lay down a motorcycle?

People often talk about laying a motorcycle down in an effort to avoid a crash.

It is typically seen as a last-ditch effort. You see a truck pull out into the road in front of you. The driver never saw your motorcycle. You lay the bike down to avoid a direct collision at speed.

But is this really wise?

There are some situations where it can help. You may be able to take the impact with your legs and body, for instance, rather than your head. Since two broken legs may heal more effectively than a traumatic brain injury, laying the bike down can decrease the lasting issues you face -- even when it will not prevent injuries entirely.

However, experts do note that you are often better off to stay on the bike. For one thing, your tires are designed to slow your bike down and grip the road. The metal side of the bike and your leather jacket are not. You may actually cut more speed before the crash if you just hammer the brakes and stay on the bike.

In addition, some accidents can be avoided. Are you better off to lay the bike down on the pavement and slide into the accident or to turn your bike and swerve around the other vehicle on the shoulder? Obviously, every situation is different, but you may be better off to avoid a crash.

No matter what, if this is a decision you have to make, you're likely going to suffer some injuries. Make sure you fully understand your legal options.

Source: Ride Apart, "How to Lay 'er Down," Wes Siler, accessed May 18, 2018

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