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What should new riders know about motorcycle safety?

To really be safe on a motorcycle in New Jersey, new riders shouldn't think that they can just hop on and start riding without taking the time to consider a few key points. This is, in many ways, harder than driving a car. Here are a few things that all new riders may want to think about:

-- A safety course can teach new riders a lot about how to ride, what to watch out for and what steps to take to avoid crashes.-- Courses are also required to get an endorsement, making it legal to ride.-- Riding a dirt bike first can be a good idea to get used to the way that you ride a motorcycle; you'll be going slower and you won't have traffic around you, so it is a safer way to learn.-- A scooter can also be a safe way to learn due to its low power, though you probably will ride in traffic.-- A bike with an automatic transmission is great for a new rider, as it means he or she has one less thing to think about; additionally, shifting mistakes won't lead to accidents, as they can on other bikes.-- Above all else, new riders are advised to avoid all risks that they can; bikers are sometimes tempted to drive too quickly or too aggressively, but these unnecessary risks just increase the odds of a wreck for no reason.

Not all accidents are the fault of the bikers, though, so these tips can't help bikers avoid every crash. If someone else caused a wreck and you were injured, you should know your legal rights.

Source: Ride Apart, "Advice for the New Rider," Jason Fogelson, accessed Aug. 25, 2015

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