May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month in Virginia, and it's a vital time to highlight the importance of safe riding practices on the road. With the warmer weather comes an upsurge in motorcycle traffic, and all drivers must be aware of their surroundings and share the road safely with motorcyclists.
In 2021, 5,932 motorcyclists died in crashes, accounting for 14% of all traffic deaths. According to NHTSA data, this is the highest number of motorcycle fatalities since at least 1975. Per vehicle miles traveled, motorcycle riders were about 24 times more likely than passenger vehicle occupants to die in a motor vehicle wreck and were four times more likely to suffer injuries in 2021. The majority of fatal motorcycle crashes involve a collision with another vehicle, with a significant number of these crashes involving drivers making left-hand turns. Alcohol impairment is also a significant factor in motorcycle fatalities, with about 29% of motorcyclists killed in crashes in 2021 having a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 g/dL or higher. Studies show that helmets effectively reduce the risk of motorcycle fatalities and head injuries. However, in 2021 DOT-compliant motorcycle helmet usage was only 65%, down from 69% in 2020.
Virginia has observed a rise in motorcycle accidents, which can be attributed to an increase in motorcycle registrations. In 2022, there were 3,222 motorcycle crashes on Virginia roads, leading to 115 fatalities and 1,967 injuries. Let's explore motorcycle safety and discuss some tips for staying safe on the road.
10 Tips For Motorists To Share The Road With Motorcyclists
Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month Campaign reminds all road users to be cautious and aware when sharing the road with motorcyclists. By promoting safe riding practices and encouraging everyone to be wary of their surroundings, we can help lower the number of motorcycle accidents and make our roads safer for all. Here are 10 tips for motorists to share the road with motorcyclists:
- Be mindful of your surroundings: Always stay alert and aware of motorcycles on the road, especially during intersections and lane changes.
- Use your signals: Use your turn signals to indicate your intentions to other drivers and motorcyclists on the road.
- Give motorcycles enough space: Keep a safe distance from motorcycles, especially when passing them, and avoid following too closely.
- Check your blind spots: Always check your blind spots and mirrors before changing lanes or making a turn, as motorcycles can easily be overlooked.
- Look twice: Double-check for motorcycles before entering or leaving a roadway or turning, as motorcycles can be difficult to see.
- Avoid distractions: Avoid distractions such as texting or eating while driving, as they can increase the risk of accidents involving motorcycles.
- Yield to motorcyclists: Always yield to motorcyclists who have the right of way, and be patient if they travel at a slower speed.
- Avoid sudden movements: Avoid sudden movements or abrupt stops, as they can startle motorcyclists and cause accidents.
- Respect motorcyclists' space: Avoid crowding motorcycles on the road and give them plenty of room to maneuver.
- Be patient: Be patient and courteous to motorcyclists on the road, and remember that they have the same rights as other drivers.
By following these tips, motorists can help make the road safer for themselves and motorcyclists. Remember, sharing the road and being aware of other drivers and motorcyclists is crucial to ensure everyone arrives safely at their destination.
Tips For Virginian Motorcyclists When On The Road
Here are some tips for Virginia motorcyclists to stay safe on the road:
- Wear proper gear: Always wear protective gear, including a helmet, gloves, and boots, to protect yourself in an accident.
- Be visible: Make yourself more visible to other drivers, and wear bright and reflective clothing.
- Know your limits: Don't push yourself beyond your limits or ride in conditions you are not comfortable with.
- Check your bike: Make sure your motorcycle is in good condition before riding, including brakes, tires, and lights.
- Follow traffic laws: Follow all traffic laws and regulations, including speed limits and lane markings.
- Be aware of your surroundings: Always be mindful of your surroundings, including other drivers, pedestrians, and road conditions.
- Stay alert: Avoid distractions such as music or texting while riding.
- Use your signals: Use your turn signals to communicate your intentions to other drivers and motorcyclists on the road.
- Avoid blind spots: Avoid riding in other drivers' blind spots, and be aware of cars merging or changing lanes around you.
Virginia motorcyclists can help ensure a safer and more enjoyable riding experience by following these tips. Remember, safety should always be your top priority when on the road. Check here! Kalfus & Nachman, attorney Paul Hernandez shared some more quick tips for riders and drivers on Legal Matters, the weekly segment of The Hampton Roads Show.
Get Help From Trusted Virginia Motorcycle Accident Attorneys
May is recognized as Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month to increase awareness and promote safe riding practices among motorcyclists and other drivers on the road. Motorcyclists and other motorists must be aware of the risks and take steps to prevent accidents, such as wearing helmets, following traffic laws, and avoiding distractions while driving.
In addition to fatal injuries, motorcycle crashes can result in serious and life-changing injuries. If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident in Virginia, Kalfus & Nachman's skilled motorcycle accident lawyers are here to help you get the compensation you deserve. From medical bills to lost wages, we'll fight for your rights and hold wrongdoers accountable. Contact us today for a free consultation at 855-880-8163, and let us help you get back on the road to recovery. We serve clients in Roanoke, Norfolk, Newport News, and the surrounding areas.