May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month. Started by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), this month reminds vehicle drivers and motorists to practice safe driving and riding practices to help reduce the number of fatalities and injuries on our nation’s roadways.
Motorcycle deaths are on the rise. In fact, in 2020, 5,579 motorcyclists died in traffic crashes, an 11% increase from 2019. Safety on the road should be taken seriously, as this increase is concerning. Here are our tips for motorcycle safety.
- Ride sober.
- Use your turning signals.
- Wear brightly colored clothing and place reflective tape on your helmet and/or vehicle.
- Be aware of the driver’s blind spots. Ride where you know you will be visible to other drivers and riders.
- Wear a helmet at all times.
- Stay within the speed limit.
- Check your equipment before riding to ensure nothing is broken.
- Get licensed. 36% of motorcyclists involved in fatal crashes in 2020 did not possess valid motorcycle licenses. This can hurt your case if you are injured in an accident.
- If you are new to riding a motorcycle, practice in less crowded areas before riding around other drivers.
- Pay attention to your blind spots — almost 40% of your car is blocked by blind spots. Motorcycles are also much smaller than cars and easier to miss when changing lanes. Double-check your mirrors to be safe.
- Never try to share lanes with a motorcycle rider. They have just as much right to lanes as you.
- Keep a safe distance. You may not see a brake light if the rider is slowing down. Allow for more following distance, about 3-4 seconds.
- Signal before changing lanes or merging in traffic. Also, allow enough time to determine the biker’s intentions before proceeding.
Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Kaiman & Crahan, Ready to Help
As the weather warms up in the Kentuckiana region, you can expect to see more motorcycles on the roads. Educate yourself and others about how to be safe on and around motorcycles. If you are injured in an accident involving a motorcycle, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our office for support. We are well-versed in this specific type of accident and can offer you a free consultation to go over all of your options.