As Spring pushes away Winter’s blanket and Summer warms us with sunshine and gentle breezes, motorcycle riders pull back their tarps, dust off their bikes and hit the road.  This increase in ridership also means an increase in accidents.  In 2015, there were eighty-eight thousand injuries and 5,029 deaths from motorcycle accidents.[1]  The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (“NHTSA”) previously found that 50% of motorcycles accidents occur between June and September, with the most in July.[2]   Despite these statistics, riders should not garage their bikes.  Instead, they should practice preparation and vigilance.

First, riders should wear available protective gear, most importantly helmets.  As observed by NHTSA, “helmets saved the lives of 1,859 motorcyclists in 2016.  If all motorcyclists had worn helmets, an additional 802 lives could have been saved.”[3]  They also should wear clothing that protects against road rash injuries, e.g., leather jackets or long pants.  And, this clothing should be reflective or brightly colored.  Being visible to other motorists is more important than style.

Second, riders should follow all traffic rules and never drink and drive.  In past years, 30 percent of motorcycle accidents were alcohol-related.[4]  Moreover, 33 percent of fatal crashes involved speeding.[5]  Riders should also avoid making sharp turns, stay within their lanes, yield to cars and other vehicles, and use turn signals.

Third, riders should practice defensive driving.  They should never assume that another driver sees them and they should anticipate changing road conditions, including sudden stopping events.  Additionally, riders should use their headlamps at night and during the day, and avoid blind spots.  Visibility prevents accidents.

If you or someone you know has been injured in a motorcycle accident, please contact Keefe Law Firm for a free consultation.  Keefe Law Firm is here as your life-long law firm.

[1]           See NHTSA, Traffic Safety Facts 2016 Data, at *2

[2]           See NHTSA, Fatal Two-Vehicle Motorcycle Crashes at *15, (September 2007)

[3]           See NHTSA, Traffic Safety 2016 Data, at *8

[4]            See NHTSA, Fatal Two-Vehicle Motorcycle Crashes at *20

[5]            See NHTSA, Traffic Safety 2016 Data, at *4

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