May Is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month
Motorcycles present unique challenges on the road, both for riders and for other motorists. In addition to being harder to control and having slow reaction times, motorcycles also offer little in the way of physical protection. This means that when motorcycle accidents do occur, the injuries riders suffer have the tendency to be severe. As the weather keeps getting warmer, you can expect to see an increase in motorcycles on the road throughout the area. In honor of Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, which is held each year during May, we offer the following tips to protect both motorcyclists and other drivers.
Fatal Motorcycle Accident in Manatee County
A fatal motorcycle crash in Manatee County illustrates how dangerous motorcycle accidents can be and why riders and motorists alike need to take precautions. According to an April 19, 2019 news report by My SunCoast, one person was killed after a motorcycle collided with a pickup truck in Sarasota, at the intersection of U.S. 301 and CR 675.
The motorcyclist was traveling in the northbound lanes when he collided with a Dodge truck, turning left and headed south. While the driver of the pickup truck was listed as only suffering minor injuries, the motorcyclist was pronounced dead at the scene. Police are still investigating the crash and have not determined whether alcohol was a factor. Thus far, no charges have been filed in the case.
Unfortunately, the Governor’s Highway Safety Association (GHSA) reports that Florida has the highest motorcycle accident fatality rate in the country, with more than 600 people killed each year. Motorcycle crashes are complex events and often involve multiple factors, both on the part of the motorcyclist and others involved. Leading causes include:
- Distracted driving;
- Disregarding traffic signs or signals;
- Aggressive driving, such as tailgating or improper passing;
- Driving under the influence.
Preventing Motorcycle Accidents
During the month of May, state and federal highway safety officials will be making the effort to spread the word about how to prevent motorcycle accidents in honor of Motorcycle Safety Awareness month. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, there has been a general increase in the overall number of these collisions over the past several years. In addition to warning motorcyclists about wearing the proper safety gear and avoiding reckless driving behaviors, they also offer tips for motorists on sharing the road. These include:
- Slow down and assess the surroundings, being alert for motorcyclists who may be nearby;
- If you are beside a bike when making a turn, turn the wheel sharply to avoid cutting them off or drifting into their lane;
- Always double check blind spots when switching lanes or passing other vehicles;
- Avoid closely following motorcyclists and give them plenty of advance warning when applying brakes if they are following you.
Let Us Help You with Your Case
When crashes and collisions involving motorcycles happen, the Law Office of Steven G. Lavely is here to help. Call or contact our Bradenton motorcycle accident lawyer online to request a consultation today.