Motorcycle Safety Month
According to the North Carolina Department of Transportation, in 2017 there were 3,600 motorcycle-related crashes that resulted in 141 fatalities – a decrease from 151 fatalities in 2016. The South Carolina Department of Public Safety reported there were 2,279 motorcycle-related crashes in 2017 that resulted in 114 fatalities – a decrease from 139 fatalities in 2016.
These high numbers are the reason that May has been proclaimed National Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month. There are many events throughout the month dedicated to promoting motorcycle safety and encouraging riders and drivers alike to work harder to avoid these collisions.
Motorists can help make roads safer for motorcyclists by taking some simple precautions:
- Be extra cautious on weekends, when motorcyclists take to the road.
- Provide motorcyclists adequate room to maneuver. Follow at least five to six seconds behind them.
- Allow extra maneuvering room in areas with potholes, pavement transitions and railroad crossings. Motorcyclists may need to slow down, stop or adjust their lane position
- Never try to share a lane with a motorcycle. Motorcycles have the same right to lanes as any other vehicle.
- Never drive distracted or impaired.
- If a motorcycle is nearby, check your mirrors carefully before changing lanes. Motorcycles may be in your blind spots or difficult to see because of their smaller size.
One of the most common reasons drivers give for cutting off or pulling out in front of a motorcycle is that they “didn’t see it.”
Motorcyclists can prevent crashes and injuries by:
- Headlights must remain on at all times.
- Stay at least three to four seconds behind a vehicle they intend to pass, checking oncoming traffic from the left side of the lane, signaling the intention to turn and then checking for oncoming traffic before passing.
- Never ride distracted or impaired.
- Checking their rearview mirror and quickly turn their head to ensure the vehicle is a safe distance behind them when completing a pass.
- Wearing helmets that meet a high protection standard.
- Wearing proper clothing, eyewear and sturdy, closed toe footwear.
For any riders interested in getting one-on-one or group training, MotoMark1 in North Carolina offers state-of-the-art motorcycle training courses utilizing instructor-to-student communication. MotoMark1 employs AAA certified instructors that have been training riders for 16 years and has locations across North Carolina in Jacksonville, Wilkesboro, Burlington and Fayetteville.