Motorcycle Safety Statistics and Tips Provided by the NHTSA
UNITED STATES – According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) online, there are several ways in which motorcyclists can stay safe to prevent accidents on the road.*
In 2018, The number of motorcyclists who lost their lives in crashes decreased to 4,985, which represents a five percent decrease from the year before. Yet, people are still becoming seriously injured or dying on motorcycles. Motorcyclists account for 14% of all traffic-related fatalities. In 2017, 28% of all motorcycle riders who were tragically killed were also drunk. Per miles traveled, motorcyclists are about 28 times more likely than people in vehicles to die in a traffic collision.
There are several steps a motorcyclist can take to remain safe on the roadways.
- Wear a helmet that meets the United States Department of Transportation Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 218. Look for the DOT symbol on the outside back of the helmet.
- Wear appropriate protective gear when biking that cover your arms and legs, such as clothing made of leather or some other durable type of fabric (such as a heavy denim), which can help avoid injuries should you be involved in an accident. Also wear boots that cover your ankles and gloves for your hands and wrists. Reflective and bright colored clothing will make you more visible to other drivers.
- Obey the speed limit, follow the rules of the road and local traffic laws.
- Never assume that other drivers can see you, as many collisions are caused by a driver who violates a motorcyclist’s right-of-way. To be as visible as possible to other motorists, always ride with your headlights on, signal in advance of any intended directional change, stay out of drivers’ blind spots, and watch out for vehicles that are turning.
- Do not drink and drive, as this can cause serious and sometimes fatal accidents. Alcohol and drugs, including prescription medication, can negatively affect coordination, balance, throttle control, ability to shift gears and reaction time. Also be sure that you are well-rested when riding. Fatigue as well as alcohol consumption both impair a biker’s ability to react in time to avoid an accident.
- Make sure to maintain your bike at all times. This includes checking your tires for cracks or bulges, checking to make sure you do not have an oil leak, checking the integrity of your signals, taillights and headlights, and making sure you have enough coolant and hydraulic fluids.
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