by: USMC (Public Domain)Whether you are a biker or a driver, Stillman and Friedland would like to remind you that it is once again Motorcycle Awareness Month. There is no question that bikers need to review the rules of the road to stay safe. But if you are a car or truck driver, you should also review some basic points for sharing the road with motorcycles.
The National Safety Council agrees that it is up to both bikers and drivers to keep everyone safe on the road. While 97% of all motor vehicles out there are on “four wheels”, “two wheelers”—motorcycles and scooters—make up 13% of all fatalities on the road. As we all know, in a crash between a car or truck and a motorcycle, survival is much better in an enclosed vehicle with safety features. Being even partly responsible for someone’s death is nothing anyone of us would choose to live with, so review the basics for sharing the road:
- Stay alert and to be responsive to motorcycle traffic
- As always, stay off your cellphone so you have maximum reaction time
- Monitor blind spots before turning or changing lanes
- Obey the law and respect bikers’ right-of-way
Boomer bikers, please note: Maybe riding a motorcycle again feels as simple getting back on a regular bicycle, but motorcycle deaths have risen as the baby boomer generation gets back on bikes. It is nostalgia with a price — boomer deaths in motorcycle accidents far outpace the general increase in biker fatalities. Overall, deaths increased 5% between 2015 and 2016, while boomer biker deaths climbed a whopping 20%. You may think you are 18 again when you get on that motorbike, but your reactions and night vision are not what they used to be. Add in a few drinks and you are even further behind that young guy you used to be. Your chances of surviving a possible accident have also diminished. So think twice before getting on that motorcycle in the evening and stopping at a bar. Drinking is a major contributor to motorcycle fatalities.
A full helmet is your best defense against head injuries. Those half helmets may look retro, but so is their protection. They hark back to an era when there were fewer drivers and lower speeds, and materials were more primitive. Check out the best safety recommendations for helmet safety and a safe fit here:
Enjoy the open roads safely this May and all year!
Because we care…