Safety tips for Motorcycle Awareness Month

Stay alert on the road, especially for two wheels. May is Motorcycle Awareness Month, so always look twice for a motorcycle. (WLFI Photo)
Stay alert on the road, especially for two wheels. May is Motorcycle Awareness Month, so always look twice for a motorcycle. (WLFI Photo)

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — As May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month for Indiana, proclaimed by Gov. Mike Pence, it is good habit to remember motorcyclists are out on the roadway. ISP said make sure to share the road and practice safe driving habits.

Indiana State Police said many serious and fatal crashes occur when motorists turn in front of motorcyclists. Troopers said make sure to stay alert, especially at intersections and while making turns and lane changes.

Studies indicate that in multiple-vehicle accidents, the driver of the other vehicle violated the motorcyclists’ right-of-way and caused the collision in two-thirds of those crashes.

Troopers said it is difficult to time the speed and distance of an approaching motorcycle. Before you drive through an intersection or make a left turn, check the position of oncoming motorcycles at least two or three times.

Statistics show that multiple-vehicle crashes account for approximately 75 percent of all motorcycle accidents.

ISP urges riders to wear helmets. They said it could save your life. According to the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute, 151 motorcycle fatalities occurred in Indiana during 2012. Of those fatalities, 122 people were not wearing helmets.

The Indiana Department of Transportation said construction zones and uneven road surfaces can also be a deadly for motorcyclists. INDOT reminds motorcyclists to be extra vigilant while riding through these sites and beware of edge traps, which occur when one lane is higher than the other.

Safety tips for motorcyclists provided by Indiana State Police:

  • Wear a DOT approved helmet and riding safety gear.
  • Don’t consume alcohol while riding. During 2012, 36 motorcycle fatalities occurred in Indiana involving alcohol.
  • Be visible. Ensure your headlight, taillight and brake light work properly.
  • Wear high visibility clothing.
  • Use lane positioning to increase visibility and watch for turning vehicles.
  • Avoid riding in blind spots.

ISP said cooperation between everyone on the road is essential to successful traffic management and roadway safety.

Pence said remember “save a life, be aware, motorcycles are everywhere”.

Data compiled from: ABATE of Indiana’s 2014 Fact Sheet, Indiana Criminal Justice Institute and Indiana State Police.

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