The freedom of riding on a motorcycle in an open road is rich and rewarding. Because of the weather in Arizona, we have more riders than most other states. However, before you hit the road you need to know how to stay safe and follow the rules. The following article is intended to inform you about Arizona’s motorcycle laws and provide a few general safety tips.
Arizona Motorcycle laws and Regulations
- Motorcycle Requirements
- Handlebars may not be above your shoulders when you ride
- Operational mufflers are mandatory on motorcycles in Arizona, but sound restrictions depend on the model of your motorcycle
- Turn signals are not required, but you must use hand signals if you do not have turn signals
- At least one side mirror
- A taillight
- Front and rear wheel braking systems
- At least one headlamp
- A horn
- If you are carrying a passenger, your motorcycle must have a passenger seat, footrests, and hand grips
- Spark arrestor
- Rider/Passenger Equipment Requirements
- Riders and passengers under the age of 18 must wear a helmet
- There are no restrictions on helmet speakers
- All riders and passengers must wear eye protection, unless the motorcycle is equipped with a windshield
- License Restrictions
- You must be 16 years old to obtain a motorcycle license in Arizona
- Riders that are 15 ½ may obtain a motorcycle permit that is valid for seven months
- Riders under the age of 18 must hold a permit for six months, pass a DMV approved motorcycle education course, or have their parent/guardian certify that they have practiced riding a motorcycle for 30 hours to obtain a motorcycle license
- Insurance Requirements
- $15,000 of bodily injury coverage if one person is involved in a crash
- $30,000 of total bodily injury coverage if multiple people are involved in a crash
- $10,000 of property damage coverage
- Prepare for a crash before one happens.
Even the most experienced motorcyclists crash every once in awhile. In order to stay safe in the event of a crash, you should know what you will do if you do crash. This means that you should become very familiar with your insurance policy, and keep relevant medical information on your person when you ride. If you do crash, remember to stay calm and that personal safety comes first, your motorcycle can always be repaired later. Most motorcycle crashes happen with five miles of where the motorcycle was started because many beginner riders do not take the time to “break in” their bikes. Attending a motorcycle safety course would be an excellent way to sharpen your skills and become more familiar with your motorcycle.
- Wear protective clothing.
You will be exposed to everything that the road has to offer when you ride on a motorcycle. So, you should wear clothing that is appropriate to protect you from weather, debris, and other dangers on the road. Wear durable clothing that will protect you in case you accidentally slide your motorcycle. Some motorcycle companies manufacture their own clothing with built in armor, but jeans and a leather jacket work too. Make sure that your helmet fits snuggly onto your head and that your chin strap is securely fastened so it won’t fall off if you crash. You should wear heavy boots that come up above your ankles. This will make shifting gears easier and might save you from a broken foot bone if you crash.
- Have more than the minimum amount of insurance.
There are several situations that would not be in your best interest if you do not have enough insurance. You should consider the following coverages for your policy:
- Additional medical and liability insurance can save you from a lot of heartache. Not having enough of this basic (not to mention mandatory) coverage can leave you with a tremendous amount of financial debt.
- Comprehensive coverage will compensate you for damage caused to your motorcycle that was not caused by a collision with another car. For example, if your motorcycle was stolen, or if you crashed into a wall, the damages to your motorcycle will be covered.
- Uninsured/Underinsured coverage will compensate you for medical and property damage if you’re involved in a crash with someone who does not have insurance, or whose insurance won’t cover all of your damages.
- Roadside assistance is helpful for riders who are planning on going for a long road trip. If you break down on the side of the road, roadside assistance will pick you up and tow your motorcycle to a repair shop.