May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month: Here’s how you can help prevent accidents

May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month (Photo: MGN)

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The month of May has been declared as the 2023 Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is sharing tips with the public on how riders, and drivers, can help to prevent accidents on the roads.

According to the NHTSA, there were 5,932 motorcyclists killed in 2021 alone, totaling 14% of all traffic fatalities that year.

NHTSA data shows that this is the highest number of motorcyclists killed since, at least, 1975.

Of the motorcycle operators involved in fatal crashes in 2021, 36% were riding without valid motorcycle licenses.

The NHTSA also says the majority of multi-vehicle motorcycle crashes generally are caused when other drivers simply did not see the motorcyclist.

In an attempt to keep the roads safe for everyone, the NHTSA is urging drivers and motorcyclists to share the road and be alert.

Also, they’re reminding motorcyclists to make themselves visible, to use DOT-compliant motorcycle helmets, and to always ride sober.

The NHTSA also suggest that motorcyclists:

  • Make sure you are properly licensed, educated and experienced
  • Check tire pressure, tread depth, brakes, headlights, signal indicators and fuel levels before you ride
  • Completely cover your body, ideally by wearing leather, heavy denim or protective gear
  • Obey traffic laws, lights, signs, speed limits and lane markings
  • Leave a safe amount of space between you and other vehicle

Per miles traveled in 2021, motorcyclists are about 24 times more likely than people in passenger cars to die in a traffic crash.

For more information and resources, click here. 

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