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Driving in a group
 

If you want to drive with other motorcycle or moped drivers, you must do it in a way that is not dangerous and does not interfere with the flow of traffic.

Never drive directly alongside another motorcycle or moped. If you have to avoid another vehicle or something in the road, you will have no place to go. To speak to another driver, wait until you both have stopped.

The best way for a group of motorcycles or mopeds to drive together is in a “staggered formation.” This means the leader drives on the left side of the lane while the second driver stays a little behind — about a one-second distance — and drives on the right side of the lane. A third driver would take the left side, leaving a two-second distance behind the first driver. The fourth driver would be a two- second distance behind the second driver. This staggered formation allows the group to stay close together without reducing following distance and without having drivers drive alongside one another. Staggered formation can be safely used on an open road. However, you should drive in a single line on curves, in turns or when entering or leaving a freeway.

Diagram showing how to ride in a group of motorcycles

When drivers in a staggered formation want to pass another vehicle on the road, they should do it one at a time. When it is safe, the lead driver should pull out and pass. When the leader returns to the lane, she or he should move to the left of the lane and keep going to open a gap for the next driver. As soon as the first driver has passed safely, the second driver should move to the left of the lane and watch for a safe chance to pass. After passing, this driver should return to the right of the lane and open up a gap for the next driver.

Here are some tips to help you keep your group together without interfering with traffic or endangering others:

  • Plan ahead. If you are the leader, look ahead for changes. Give signals early so the word gets back in plenty of time. Start lane changes early enough to let everyone complete the change.
  • Put beginner drivers up front. Place inexperienced drivers behind the leader where they can be watched by more experienced drivers.
  • Check the driver behind you. Let the driver at the back set the pace. Use your mirrors to keep an eye on the driver behind you. If she or he falls behind, slow down. If everyone does this, the group will stay together.