Getting into an accident is often devastating for a motorcyclist. With little protection — perhaps a helmet and a leather jacket — any crash can lead to serious injuries. That’s why motorcyclists spend a lot of time thinking about how they can avoid these accidents to begin with.

One tactic that some people propose is laying the bike down to stop from crashing. Say a truck pulls out of a driveway in front of you. You tip the bike over in a desperate attempt to stop before hitting the truck, or at least to slow down as much as possible.

However, some experts say you should never lay down your bike. After all, your tires have far more traction than the plastic and metal side of the bike. If you just hit the brakes, you can slow down much faster than if you laid the bike down. Staying upright also means you have control, so you can steer. Laying it down means you are entirely out of control and can no longer take evasive action.

The best ways to avoid a crash are simply to stay alert, to look for hazards in advance and to wear bright/reflective clothing. If you make yourself as visible as possible, you reduce your accident odds. If you become a talented defensive driver, you reduce them even further. By doing this, you may never find yourself in a situation where you’re considering laying it down.

That said, reducing your odds of an accident does not mean that you’ll never get involved in one. If you do, you need to know your rights to financial compensation.