Does a Motorcycle Need a Safety Inspection in Missouri?
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that motorcycle riders are in constant danger. In fact, according to the Insurance Information Institute, more than 5,000 riders were killed and another 84,000 injured in 2019. These accidents are often caused by other drivers or poor road and weather conditions.
However, biker deaths and injuries can also be caused by factors within the rider’s control, such as the condition of their bike. That’s why the Motorcycle Safety Foundation recommends regular inspections. But are safety inspections a requirement in the state of Missouri, and what can a rider expect from one?
Missouri’s Inspection Requirements
In order to register or renew a motor vehicle in Missouri, riders must submit proof the vehicle passed a safety inspection. The reason for this requirement is to ensure all vehicles on the road are in good working order. If the vehicle fails to meet certain criteria, the owner has to get the necessary repairs to be able to drive it legally.
Before 2010, motorcycles needed a safety inspection five years after their year of manufacture. For instance, if a biker owned a 2006 model, they would have needed to get it inspected in 2011. However, on August 28, 2019, a new law, called Senate Bill 89, changed the state’s vehicle inspection rules. Nowadays, inspections are required for vehicles over 10 years old or ones that have more than 150,000 miles. Nonetheless, it is important to keep in mind that safety inspections are still necessary to renew a motor vehicle license.
If you are a minor trying to obtain a license for the first time, find out how old you have to be to get a motorcycle license in Missouri.
What Does the Inspection Entail?
Motorcycles have to obey the same rules as other vehicles. So, in order for one to pass inspection, a professional will have to examine the following components and give them a good rating:
● Master cylinder fluid level
● Brake pedal height and reserve
● Wheel and master cylinder for leakage
● Tail Lights and reflectors
● Turn signals
● Break rods, cables, and hoses
● Beam indicator
● Grease retainers
● Wheel bearings
● Fork, frame, handlebars, steering head bearing
● Front and rear wheel tracking
● Wheels, tires, and rims
● Front and rear shock absorbers
● Exhaust system and muffler
● Filler cap, fuel tank, and fuel line connections
How Much Does It Cost?
The price of a motorcycle inspection depends on the inspection center. However, one should expect to pay anywhere from $12 to $30 for a thorough motorcycle safety inspection. Also, it is important to mention that only authorized centers should conduct the inspection, as they know exactly what to check in a vehicle.
Additional Recommended Inspections
Although the state-required inspections usually catch the more dangerous issues, mechanical problems can arise at any time and put the rider’s life in peril. Underinflated tires, leaking fuel lines, and bad breaks can all lead to devastating accidents. As a result, the MSF recommends that every motorcycle owner should conduct their own inspections before riding.
The inspection model, called T-CLOCS, should help riders remember what areas of their bike to check:
● Tires and Wheels: During this inspection, make sure to check the pressure and condition of tires, wells, and breaks.
● Controls: Inspect the motorcycle’s controls which include levers, pedals, handlebars, hoses, cables, and throttle.
● Lights and Electrics: The turn signals, battery, lights, mirrors, and reflectors need to be in working condition.
● Oil and Other Fluids: Make sure to check the fluid levels and look for leaks in order to prevent breakdowns and even fires.
● Chassis: A quick inspection of the chain, suspension, frame, belt, and fasteners can reduce the chance of severe accidents.
● Stands: If the side or center stand malfunctions, the rider could drop the bike on themselves and suffer injuries.
To be able to conduct these inspections, the rider will need some mechanical knowledge. That’s why safety advocates believe that every motorcycle owner should have a basic understanding of how their vehicle works before riding.
Unfortunately, accidents are ultimately inevitable, no matter how much a rider takes care of his bike. Whether it’s because of another driver's negligence or bad road conditions, bikers have a higher chance of suffering injuries than any other vehicle driver. This is why it is important to wear safety gears—find out more about no helmet laws in Missouri for motorcycles.
Going back, victims can request compensation for their damages with the help of a personal injury lawyer. In fact, an experienced motorcycle accident attorney in St Louis MO will be able to gather the necessary evidence and represent the victim in court, making sure they get the compensation they deserve.