I recently took my first ride with my husband on his new 2006 JM Star scooter. If you were to tell me only a few months ago I’d not only attempt this, but actually like it, I would have said that was highly unlikely. I do enjoy riding as a passenger though. My husband had to get his license endorsement to ride and I had to learn a couple things myself as a passenger.
If you plan to ride as a passenger on a scooter or motorcycle here are a few tips:
Motorcycle and Scooter Passenger Safety
1. Dress appropriate. Wear clothing that will protect you in case of an accident. Also dress appropriately for the weather. Things are a lot cooler when you’re out for a ride. And the rain can hurt when you’re traveling at high speeds.
2. Wear a helmet. Safety comes first so make sure you purchase a helmet certified by the department of transportation. You don’t want to suffer a major head injury if you’re in an accident.
3. Get on the motorcycle or scooter after the driver has started the engine. By waiting until the motorcycle or scooter is on and ready to go you avoid being caught off guard by any sudden movements.
4. Hold on to the driver or handholds. There are some passengers so comfortable cruising on the back of a scooter or motorcycle that they don’t hold on to the driver. This isn’t advised because if the driver has to make a sudden moment you need to make sure you’ll stay in place on the bike. Hold onto the driver’s waist, hips or handholds. Tighten your hold when you take off from a stop.
5. Keep your feet on footrests even at stops. It is important you keep your feet up when traveling and when you come to a stop light or stop sign. The driver will place his or her feet down on the ground to keep balance and to steady the motorcycle or scooter. As the passenger you will have to keep your feet in place. That way when it’s time to take off from a stop your feet are already in position to go. And you won’t have your feet dragging along the ground at takeoff.
6. Lean into fast turns. As the driver makes a fast turn around a curve or corner you’ll need to lean into the turn at the same angle as the motorcycle. Follow the lead of the driver to know how much you need to lean.
7. Don’t lean into slow, tight turns. When making a slow turn stay upright to create a counterbalance. This way the motorcycle won’t tip over.
8. Don’t distract the driver. As the passenger you may tempted to chat a bit while on the road, but be sure not to distract the driver with unnecessary talk. Also avoid erractic movements as the driver may be distracted. Also avoid silly antics such as messy with the driver and flailing your arms. You may find it fun and amusing, but the driver needs to concentrate.