Warm weather is upon us, which means motorcycle riding season in Massachusetts has begun. In fact, May is Motorcycle Awareness Month, which aims to increase awareness and safety for motorcyclists. This is imperative, as thousands of riders are injured or killed every year. Just two years ago, in 2014, the U.S. saw nearly 5,000 motorcyclist fatalities, making up 14 percent of all highway traffic deaths that year. With so much devastation, pain and heartache caused by these types of wrecks, it is important for motorists to ask themselves what they can do to better prevent motorcycle accidents.
There are many steps that these individuals can take to increase their motorcycle awareness and better ensure motorcyclist safety. Perhaps the most important step is to remain attentive behind the wheel. Studies have shown that drivers are distracted more than half of the time they are behind the wheel. It takes only a split second for an accident to occur, so being distracted half the time is far too long. Motorists need to put away their electronic devices and keep their eyes on the road.
But there are other steps motorists can take to further their preventative efforts. They can adjust their mirrors to try to eliminate blind spots, ensure they are leaving enough room between themselves and a motorcycle travelling in front of them and accurately gauge speed before turning out into traffic or merging.
Though the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and other federal, state and local agencies try their best to bring an end to motorcycle accidents, the sad truth is that they will continue to occur. With about half of these wrecks being caused by non-motorcyclist motorists, victims in these crashes need to carefully consider their legal options, especially since pursuing a personal injury lawsuit could allow victims to seek much needed compensation to cover damages like medical expenses and lost wages.
Source: NHTSA, “Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month 2016,” accessed on May 13, 2016