Drive safely around motorcycles

Written on behalf of Abramson Smith Waldsmith LLP

Summer is around the corner and people across the country are taking their motorcycles out of winter storage. To mark the event, the United States Department of Transportation has ordained May Motorcycles Safety Awareness Month.

Even if you’re not a motorcyclist yourself, it’s important to keep an eye out for those on bikes and to drive cautiously as you share the road.

Motorcyclist frequently hurt

On average, people on motorcycles are far more likely to be in a crash or fatal accident than other motorists.

  • Motorcyclists accounted for only 3 percent of drivers, but almost 14 percent of traffic fatalities in 2015
  • Motorcyclists are 27 percent more likely to die in a crash than those in passenger vehicles
  • 5,172 motorcyclists died in crashes 2017

Practice safety

Because motorcyclists are so vulnerable, they rely on motorists in passenger vehicles to practice caution and share the road. By following these safety tips, everyone on the road can stay safe:

  • Maintain at least four seconds of distance between your vehicle and a motorcycle in front of you
  • In inclement weather, give motorcyclists extra room to operate
  • Be aware of your vehicle’s blind spots and check them often
  • Properly adjust all mirrors to reduce blind spots as much as possible
  • Never drive in the same lane next to a motorcycle
  • Use turn signals earlier than normal to give motorcyclists time to react
  • Be extra cautious in intersections where motorcyclists may be difficult to see
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