Motorcycle enthusiasts in Louisiana can ride year-round, but it is especially enjoyable as winter comes to an end and springtime approaches. Whether you are a motorcyclist who has been riding for years, recently purchased one, or considering buying one, it is important to understand the different driving challenges you will face on the open road.
Knowing the ins and outs of Louisiana motorcycle insurance and laws can potentially save your life. The education and safety of motorcycle riders is an extremely important part of riding.
Safety Awareness Tips for Motorcycle Riders
Motorcycle safety course
Completing a motorcycle safety course before you get your license will give you more experience than someone teaching you and can lower your motorcycle insurance.
It is vital to always wear the appropriate protective gear when riding a motorcycle. This will help to reduce the severity of injuries if an accident occurs.
Maintain safe distance
Keeping a safe distance of two seconds or longer can help a biker avoid a deadly crash, especially since they have much less protection than driving a car.
Avoid the rain
Weather is always a consideration when riding a motorcycle, especially on slick roads. It is best to avoid inclement weather which can make maintaining control difficult even for a skilled motorcyclist.
To avoid an accident, same as driving a vehicle, always stay focused on the road rather than on the cell phone, GPS, or bike controls.
An intersection is some of the deadliest spots for a motorcyclist because drivers turning left or right may not always see you.
Before each ride, a motorcyclist should perform a safety check to help keep the bike functioning and operating properly. This can help to prevent a possible blowout, student engine problems, and preserve the integrity of the bike.
If you own, operate, or ride a motorcycle in Louisiana, it is important that you follow the motorcycle laws and rules of the road. The laws are put in place to protect the motorcyclist’s safety, as well as the safety of others. Following the safety tips mentioned above and the Louisiana motorcycle driving laws can help to reduce the risk of being injured in an accident.
Louisiana Motorcycle Laws
Do you need a license to ride a motorcycle in Louisiana? The answer is, yes. A motorcyclist must have an “M” endorsement on their standard driver’s license to operate a motorcycle anywhere in the state.
This means an individual will need to take and pass a road rule written test, a skills test while wearing a motorcycle helmet and eyewear, and proof of valid identification along with proof of motorcycle registration, inspection, and insurance.
Anyone fifteen or sixteen years of age with a learner’s permit or license may also operate a motorcycle but only within three miles of their residence.
Helmet and eye protection
All riders must wear a properly fitted helmet that has a DOT or SNELL sticker on either the inside or outside of it. The sticker means that the helmet complies with the safety standards of the United States Department of Transportation. Separate eye protection such as a pair of goggles, shatterproof glasses, or an approved shield is required and can reduce the risks of injury to the eyes.
Drivers and passengers
Passengers are only allowed to ride on a motorcycle if the bike has a separate dedicated seat and separate footrests. This excludes children under the age of five who are not permitted to ride on a motorcycle.
All drivers and passengers must sit astride on the bike with a leg on either side. Also, drivers cannot operate a motorcycle with handlebars more than fifteen inches higher than their seat and are required to always keep both hands on the handlebars.
Only two motorcyclists are permitted to ride side by side in a single lane of traffic. Therefore, it is illegal to ride three or more in one lane. Lane splitting which is the practice of riding on lane lines between rows of traffic is also illegal. Additionally, bikers may not ride downhill with their motorcycle in neutral gear.
Following the Louisiana motorcycle laws (RS32-191) can help protect motorcyclists from a serious auto accident injury. Wearing the approved motorcycle safety gear can help to minimize the extent of injuries. When driving a motorcycle, riders must carry both their driver’s license and proof of motorcycle insurance.
In Louisiana, just like other motorists, riders are required to carry at least minimum liability insurance. Motorcycle insurance can usually be purchased through an auto insurer such as TSL Insurance Group, an independent insurance agency in Lafayette, Baton Rouge, Lutcher, Franklin, and Abbeville, LA.
However, unless you specifically add the motorcycle to your existing policy, your auto insurance will not cover it. Without proof of insurance, you cannot register your motorcycle and cannot lawfully ride anywhere in the state.
Louisiana’s Motorcycle Minimum Liability Insurance Requirements
- $15,000 per person in bodily injury and death
- $25,000 per incident for property damage
- $30,000 per accident for bodily injury and death
Liability insurance covers injuries and damages of a third party involved in a crash that you caused but it does not protect you or your bike. While liability is the legal minimum, it is always a good idea to consider increasing your insurance. In Louisiana, by purchasing liability coverage from a licensed insurance company establishes financial responsibility that allows you to cover the cost of damage your motorcycle caused.
But if you were involved in an accident that was caused by someone else, then their liability insurance should cover your injuries and damages. So, it is especially important to consider all types of coverage to protect yourself and your passengers in the event of an accident. TSL Insurance Group is an independent insurance agency serving Lafayette, Baton Rouge, Lutcher, Franklin, and Abbeville, LA, areas that has the best insight on motorcycle insurance and can help guide you in purchasing the right policy that will fit your needs.
Read also: What Not to do While Riding a Motorcycle
Louisiana is a great place to ride your motorcycle year-round, but accidents are unpredictable. That is why it is necessary to purchase the proper insurance and coverage for you and your motorcycle. We at TSL Insurance Group can help you to purchase the motorcycle insurance policy that best fits you. We have the deepest insight into what our customers need so we are equipped to answer any question you may have.
Since motorcycle riders are vulnerable and exposed making them more susceptible to many bodily injuries, motorcycle accidents can have devastating consequences. If you would like to schedule a free consultation concerning motorcycle insurance, contact us today. Let us help you with all your insurance needs because we are the true experts in the industry.