Scenery, variety, and great hospitality – a few of the things Scotland has to offer for touring motorcyclists.
Scotland attracts motorbike tourists not only from south of the border in England and Wales but also from Ireland, France, Germany, the Netherlands and beyond. All these riders have one common goal – they wish to travel through some of the most beautiful countryside in Europe.
However, biking in Scotland can be very dangerous, especially if you are planning to journey down some of the more famously challenging routes. So, there are a few precautions that must be taken to ensure that you and everyone around you can stay as safe as possible.
What to expect and what to look out for when biking in Scotland
Whether you're on your own or part of a touring group, you will always need a route plan, particularly if you intend to arrive at your destinations by a specific time.
To help ensure your safety, you will want to take the right essentials and provisions. These include insurance documents, your mobile phone and charger, a first aid kit, and either a sat-nav or maps. It is also important to make sure you have enough fuel for your journey or, if you plan to refuel along the way, know where you are going to stop to do this - once out in the wilds, fuel stations can be few and far between.
As with every journey, you may well need to exercise a good deal of patience. If you are travelling to catch a ferry, you will need to leave plenty of time for the ride, especially if you choose to avoid – or don't have the option of using – the Motorway or the A road network.
There are only seven motorway stretches in Scotland: the M8, M9, M73, M74, M77, M80, and the M90. There are also stretches of dual and single carriageways where you will be governed by fixed, mobile, and average speed safety cameras.
Travelling by motorway will certainly get you to a main destination quicker, but the beauty of Scottish scenery is such that many bikers prefer to stay off motorways and focus more on the B roads which take in the stunning countryside. While embarking down remote routes may well expose you to more picturesque settings, these roads are likely to have long single track stretches, with only limited passing places, and are far more dangerous.
Extra care and consideration must be taken to prevent a motorcycle accident on a rural road. It will usually take much longer to traverse such routes as there could be a number of hazards along the way such as farm vehicles, tractors, loose gravel, slurry trailers, and farmers herding cattle from one field to another. These out-of-the-way roads will often have no markings, many blind spots, and soft verges where sheep and lambs often graze and where falls can happen if the animals are startled and run out in front of you. Even on A roads, you will come across warning signs for deer, which are easily startled and have been known to pose a hazard to motorbikes and cars. All these factors need to be taken into account and will have a direct impact on the speed you can travel, corner, and stop safely.
So, while all of the beauty is evident, bikers also need to be aware that there are plenty of dangers on the highly unpredictable roads that can lead to, sometimes catastrophic, injuries. You should always expect the unexpected, which includes the unpredictable weather – a Scottish quirk that some may regard as more of a nuisance, but it's part of what helps make the scenery so interesting.
Thompsons can help you make an accident claim
Of course, you should do everything in your power to keep yourself and anyone you are travelling with as safe as possible while you are touring around Scotland. But sometimes things happen that are out of your control; causing a motorcycle accident that could potentially be fatal will be devastating for you and your family.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident that was caused at least partly by another person, you could be able to make a compensation claim. Our experienced lawyers possess all the expertise to help you or a loved one receive the redress you're entitled to, providing you with honest, straightforward advice about making a claim. Realising what a difficult time this may be for you, we will use our extensive knowledge and sensitive understanding to help you get the just outcome that you deserve.
To learn more about what the claims process entails contact our lawyers today for no-obligation advice. If you do decide to take matters further, we offer a No Win No Fee Solicitors package to give you peace of mind about your finances.