Keys to Group Riding: How to Stay Safe While Having Fun
Sharing a long stretch of asphalt with a group of your buddies is the perfect way to spend a sunny afternoon in Las Vegas. Whether you’re taking a quick ride to your favorite bar or cruising across state lines, the safety of everyone in your pack is a top priority. The road captains at Las Vegas Harley-Davidson want all riders to enjoy a safe and smooth ride out on the open road. We’ve gathered together a list of five helpful tips for your next group ride.
5 Tips to Ensure a Safe Group Ride
1. Prepare Before You Hit the Road
Before you saddle up, make sure everyone is on the same page. Knowing the weather and road conditions en route to your destination is the first point to address. You should also establish a plan for the ride that includes how often the group will stop, which route the group will take, which hand signals will be used for communication, who will carry first aid and other necessities, and what the group will do in emergency situations such as severe weather, road closures or breakdowns.
2. Set the Riding Order Before Revving Up
No matter how many riders are in your group, the formation of the group should always be defined. Choose one rider to lead the group and a sweep rider to close out the rear. Assign all other riders a position between the sweep and lead riders.
3. Maintain the Riding Order
Once your group formation is set, the order should not be changed. Instead of riding side-by-side, all riders should keep a staggered formation to maximize visibility and keep a safe distance between one another. When passing other vehicles on the road, each rider should pass one at a time, starting with the leader, then move back into formation.
4. Communicate with Hand Signals
There are plenty of distractions on the road — don’t lose focus while riding. If you need to communicate with another rider or the group, use the designated hand signals. Even in times of emergency, it’s safer to signal the group to pull over than it is to try and call or shout.
5. Leave the Group if You’re Uncomfortable
Each rider has their own riding style and skill level. If you feel uncomfortable or unsafe at any time during the ride, signal the sweep rider that you’re breaking off and will rejoin them later at a stopping point.
If you’re looking for a group to ride with, check out the Southern Nevada H.O.G. Chapter. Its members form a diverse group of Harley owners who are passionate about the ride. The Southern Nevada H.O.G. Chapter is always looking for new members of all skill levels to join their riding group.
There is room on the open road for everyone. Always ride with a responsible group that prioritizes the safety of everyone on the road. For more motorcycle safety tips, attend one of Las Vegas Harley-Davidson’s rider courses. We offer courses for both new and skilled riders. For more information, contact us at 888-218-0744 today.