In 2009, the Governor’s Highway Safety Administration reported that
there had been more than 4,700 motorcycle related fatalities. This was
the first time in Colorado in the last twelve years that the numbers had
been lower than the year before and so this was good news. According to
CDOT Colorado currently has about 175 thousand registered bikes in the
entire state. Because there are so many out there on the road, it’s
vital that more motorists take note and be sure to share the road.
Experts always recommend that protective gear is worn. A full range of
protective motorcycle gear includes not just a helmet but gloves, protection
for the eyes, and a jacket. CDOT reported that the number of fatalities
that had been killed in the motorcycle accidents reported in that 2009
time frame was bolstered with two thirds reported not wearing helmets.
The NHTSA reports that in taking protective measures, particularly wearing
a helmet, motorcycle accidents that cause fatalities are reduced by around 37%.
Having said all of that, there is good news. Motorcyclists who are wearing
helmets are making up a greater and greater portion of riders. According
to the NHTSA, roughly 67% of all motorcyclists were taking precautions
and wearing helmets to protect themselves in the event of a motorcycle accident.
Alcohol was also seen to be a major contributing factor in fatalities relating
to motorcycles. With any motor vehicle, you know that you should never
drink and drive. According to CDOT, drinking and driving while riding
is actually on the rise, with 40% of all motorcycle deaths in 2009 involving
some form of alcohol use by the driver.
Allstate, an insurance company has comprised an amazing list of safety
tips for those who share the road with bikes. As many bikers know, the
number one reason that most will have an accident is because drivers of
other cars or trucks just do not share the road. They don’t see
them, and this is problematic when it comes to noting the presence of
a motorcyclist in a driver’s blind spot. This safety guide tells
drivers that it is important to give bikers more room on the road.
If you do ride, you know that in order to slow down, using the downshift
rather than the brakes is pretty normal. Unfortunately, most drivers do
not know this, and they cannot see your brake lights because you’re
not using them. It is also harder for those who ride to stop quickly or
even slow down in bad weather or on wet roads. Understanding this and
understanding the issues that larger motor vehicles may have with keeping
you in their line of sight may help.