It allows you:
• time and space to take action
to avoid a hazard or collision
• an escape route if stopping is
• to reduce the risk of having another
vehicle collide with you from behind
• to be seen more easily by drivers of
vehicles coming toward you, from the
sides, and from behind
• more time to respond to the actions
Space cushion to the front
• Your following distance is the space
that is completely controlled by you.
Managing your space to the rear and
sides can be more challenging, but you,
the rider, manage the space ahead.
• Create and maintain a safe following
distance. The closer you follow another
vehicle, the greater your risk of colliding
with it. You will also not have enough
time to see and respond to hazards in
your lane, like pot holes and debris.
• Stay at least two to three seconds
behind the vehicle ahead.
• At higher speeds, or when conditions
are less than ideal, such as poor light
or poor weather, stay at least three to
four seconds behind the vehicle you
A minimum two to three second following
distance is recommended. When conditions are
not ideal, increase your following distance.
Space cushion behind
• Use your mirrors to be aware of vehicles
• If a vehicle behind you is following too
closely, reduce your speed slightly to
allow the vehicle to pass and to increase
your following distance from the vehicle
in front of you. This will allow you more
time and space to slow or stop gradually,
giving you more options to deal with the
vehicle behind you. This reduces the risk
of being hit from behind.
Space cushion to the sides
• To have a space cushion beside you,
avoid riding beside another vehicle or
riding in the blind spot of the vehicle in
the next lane. The driver of the vehicle
might move into your lane without doing
a shoulder check.
• Do not ride beside another motorcycle
in the same lane. It is illegal and you will
have fewer options for an escape route.
• Avoid riding close to the edge of
your lane or to the curb, as this may
encourage other drivers to move into
Space cushion and
• Create a wide space between you and
large vehicles. Drivers of these vehicles
often have large blind spots behind
and to the sides of their vehicles. If you
follow a large vehicle too closely, the
driver will not be able to see you. Your
view of the road ahead will be reduced,
and drivers of oncoming vehicles will be
less able to see you.