Safety advice for motorcyclists


While motorcyclists represent less than 2% of all licensed vehicle drivers in the country, they account for 10% of road fatalities. You can help to ensure you travel safely by being aware of the various dangers on the road, the way you drive and your obligations as a road user.


As a motorcyclist, you have certain obligations:

  • Be aware of your legal duties as a motorcyclist and make sure you know the Rules of the Road.
  • Ensure that your motorcycle is roadworthy at all times. This includes checking that your tyres are of correct tread depth and that all lights and reflectors are functioning correctly.
  • Wear an approved helmet and protective clothing.
  • Always maintain concentration when driving.
  • Try to anticipate potential hazards on the road.
  • Drive at a speed that enables you to stop within the appropriate distance if necessary.
  • Keep a safe distance between you and the vehicle in front of you.
  • Be aware of adverse weather and poor road conditions.
  • Be visible at all times.
  • Use your headlights day and night.

It is illegal in Ireland to drink or take drugs and drive any vehicle. For more details, see our document on driving offences.

You must carry a valid driving licence for the correct category of motorcycle.

Buying and using a motorcycle helmet

The Road Safety Authority (RSA) publication this is your Bike (pdf) has advice on buying and using a motorcycle helmet.

You should:

  • Buy a good quality helmet from a reputable dealer. Try several different sizes and makes. Make sure the dealer knows how to assess proper fit.
  • Never buy or use a second hand helmet.
  • Replace a damaged helmet immediately.
  • Wear your helmet at all times and it must be securely fastened.

Further information

You can get more information on motorcycle safety from the RSA website and in their publication This is your bike: Our motorcycle safety booklet (pdf).

Page edited: 28 June 2022