Don’t Tailgate a Motorcycle: Dangers of Tailgating a Motorcyclist


Tailgating is one of the most common forms of road rage because you are following closely behind another driver to retaliate for something they did. We all know that we shouldn’t tailgate, but sometimes our emotions get the better of us and we do not know where to draw the line.

While tailgating another car sometimes leads to accidents or a ‘little tap’, drivers should always take extra precautions when driving behind motorcycles because a single tap to a motorcyclist is enough to kill a motorcyclist. Motorcyclists and motorcycle safety are put at risk with careless drivers. Motorcycle collisions are most common on one wheel track where motorcycle safety is least considered. Using the brake light and maintaining a safe following distance are other preventative measures to ensure motorcycle safety. In extreme cases, riders should gradually slow down their ride and put their attorney client relationship to good use for their own safety. Other drivers may not be as considerate to maintain a safe following distance or use their brake light always. Bad driving poses threat to the surrounding, driver and others on and off-road. Let them pass in a dangerous situation.

Motorcyclists are always at more risk from tailgating because unlike cars, they do not have any added safety net between them and the road. So, they are already at a disadvantage when it comes to safety. Here are the top 5 reasons why tailgating a motorcyclist is even more dangerous than tailgating a car –

5 Reasons Why Tailgating a Motorcyclist is Dangerous

1) Motorcyclists Lack the Protection of a Car

2) Drivers often Don’t See Motorcycles in their Blind Spots

3) During Tailgating it Becomes Difficult for Motorcyclists to avoid other Vehicles if they Suddenly Slow Down or Change Lanes

4) Risk of Getting Hit by a Tailgater Increases for a Motorcyclist When there are Other Vehicles on the Road

5) Tailgaters May Not Pay Much Attention to Motorcyclists & May Hit them Without Realizing It

Motorcyclists Lack the Protection of a Car

Motorcyclists know that motorcycles are at a greater risk of getting into accidents with other vehicles on the road, but they may not realize how much more vulnerable they are when it comes to tailgating. With cars, drivers have protection between them and the road in case something goes wrong. The car will absorb some of the impacts from hitting the pavement or another car.

In comparison, motorcyclists do not have this added protection and any collision can cause serious injury or even death because there is nothing for you to brace yourself against during impact.

The same holds true if someone were to slam on their brakes while driving behind a motorcycle because it forces riders off their bikes and onto asphalt they skid uncontrollably until coming to a stop, which can cause serious injury. Turning on the brake lights helps to evade these conditions. A vehicle ahead of another one can simply use the brake lights to give a go-ahead signal and prevent a mishap.

Drivers Often Don’t See Motorcycles in their Blind Spots

According to the 2011 crash data from the most recent National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 49% of motorcycle crashes that resulted in rider fatalities involved another vehicle – either colliding with the motorcycle or driving into the same space as the motorcyclist at an unsafe speed.

These accidents often happen because drivers do not check for motorcycles before changing lanes or merging with traffic. While you may be checking your blind spots for cars, motorcycles are much smaller and can easily slip by unnoticed.

The risk of getting hit by a tailgater increase if there are other vehicles on the road since drivers will need to check their blind spots to see if anything is coming up from behind. While a driver may check their mirrors, they won’t necessarily take the time to look over their shoulder or tilt their head slightly backward while stopping at a light.

On top of this, drivers who are tailgating another car will be focused on keeping an appropriate distance between them and the car in front of them, not checking if motorcyclists are coming up behind them since it’s unlikely that anyone would purposely try to tailgate a motorcycle going 55mph.

However, all it takes is a split second of distraction for a motorcyclist to come into your lane and you can end up hitting them without realizing it. This increases the likelihood of both parties being severely injured or killed.

During Tailgating it Becomes Difficult for Motorcyclists to avoid other Vehicles if they Suddenly Slow Down or Change Lanes

Tailgaters need more time and space to successfully merge into traffic when the lanes ahead of them are backed up, much like when a car needs enough room to switch from one lane to another without cutting off the person behind them.  For motorcycles, this means there is less response time between a car suddenly changing lanes in front of you and being stuck in their blind spot potentially causing an accident.

Since motorcyclists have little-to-no protection while riding on bikes, even tapping a rear bumper can cause serious injury or death to a motorcyclist. The same holds true if the car behind you slams on its brakes without any warning.

In addition to this, motorcycle riders must take extra precautions when riding because they don’t have any protection between them and the road or other vehicles on the road. Drivers need to be aware that motorcycles require an entirely different set of skills than those needed for driving cars and therefore, drivers should be more careful and attentive towards motorcyclists. They should accommodate them as much as possible by staying alert and keeping both feet near the brake/clutch pedals at all times so that they can react accordingly.

Risk of Getting Hit by a Tailgater Increases for a Motorcyclist When there are Other Vehicles on the Road

When tailgating, you need to be able to see behind the car ahead of you in case you need to quickly react or stop when something comes into your lane.

If there are other cars on the road in front of you, this means that a motorcyclist riding just a few feet behind you can easily slip by, without being noticed in time for a driver to react and slow down. In addition to this, drivers will have more trouble seeing motorcycles when they have several cars in front of them because they won’t be able to clearly see what is going on behind the vehicle, which could result in an accident involving a motorcyclist if they suddenly change lanes or slow down without warning.

In order for drivers to maintain a safe distance between themselves and the car in front of them, they need to be able to see behind that car. If there are several vehicles ahead of you on the road, this means that motorcycle riders will have less time to react if the car in front of them suddenly slows down or changes lanes.

It is imperative for the drivers to keep their focus on the cars around them instead of just looking at the backs of other cars. They should remember that although, putting the brakes on for a car might be easy, but, it is extremely difficult for a speedy motorcyclist to suddenly stop on the tracks or put the brakes on suddenly when another vehicle slows in front of them. They can be met with serious accidents.

Tailgaters May Not Pay Much Attention to Motorcyclists & May Hit them Without Realizing It

The biggest concern for motorcyclists is that they don’t have much protection between them and the road or other vehicles. This means that cars can easily collide with motorcycles without even realizing it.

Because there aren’t any clear boundaries between the car & motorcycle, drivers may not be able to see when a motorcycle is right behind them until it is too late. Even if you tap on their rear bumper, the driver may not feel the impact or notice if it caused damage to their car without looking back at what happened.

In addition to this, since most drivers don’t pay attention to motorcyclists as carefully as they would other vehicles on the road, especially those in front of them, a minor slight could cause serious injury or death on a motorcycle as long as the driver isn’t paying attention.

Drivers Need to be Aware that Motorcycles Need Different Skills for Driving than Automobiles

In order to drive a motorcycle safely and competently, drivers need special skills and training because motorcycles require a different approach from those of cars.  

Allowing motorcyclists enough room between them is important so that they can maneuver their vehicle correctly & ride safely with others on the road. In addition to this, tailgating has its own risks because even if you see headlights behind you in your rearview mirror, tailgaters may not see your motorcycle’s headlights & could accidentally run into you.

When drivers are riding, they need to be aware of the fact that other vehicles will act differently than cars would during an accident or shortstop. Road rage incidents occur when drivers aren’t able to quickly react and think rationally about their next actions. Being more patient can help both car & motorcyclists know what they’re doing and keep them out of harm’s way.

Drivers should give motorcyclists extra space on the road so that they can continue driving safely without causing any type of accidents on the road with another vehicle. Making sure that no one is tailgating or getting too close to a motorcyclist allows for safer roads for everyone as long as people aren’t being reckless or careless.


The most important concern for motorcyclists is the fact that they do not have the same degree of protection when it comes to a car. Motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable because of the lack of protection between them and other vehicles on the road. Always maintain a safe distance and or change to the other lane if there is an option. Ensure that the next vehicle does not feel unsafe. Use brake lights frequently.

On the other hand, Tailgating can lead to serious problems for both car & motorcycle drivers alike. Giving motorcycles more space on the road is vital for allowing them to drive safely without running into a dangerous accident with a driver that’s too close behind them or speeding up suddenly in front of them. Motorcyclists need more “breathing room” when it comes to stopping, turning, accelerating, etc.  

Tailgaters may not be aware that they’re driving too close to a motorcycle & could cause serious problems during an accident. The most important thing for drivers on the road is paying attention to what’s going on around them so that they aren’t in danger of harming others while driving.

About The Author

daniel and sarah on motorcycle

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