What Virginians need to know for motorcycle safety awareness month

You’ve heard the message before, and in May – which is the annual motorcycle safety awareness month – you’ll hear it again.  Car and truck drivers are being urged to “share the road” with motorcycle riders so everyone can stay safe.  With the number of motorcycle accidents rising every year, more needs to be done to keep riders safe on Virginia roads.

Motorcycle safety is a two way street.  Motorcyclists need to do their part to avoid accidents, but car and truck drivers also need to pay attention and watch out for bikers.  One goal of motorcycle safety month is to encourage all kinds of motor vehicle drivers to focus on safe driving.  With over 5,000 motorcycle accident deaths every year, we can all do more to improve our driving.

Tips for car and truck drivers:

  1. A motorcycle is a vehicle with the same rights and privileges as a car.  Give motorcycle riders space and never try to share a lane.
  2. Before changing lanes or turning, always check your windows and mirrors for motorcycles.  Then, check again – and beware of your blind spots.
  3. Use your turn signal before changing lanes or making a turn – always.
  4. Know that motorcycle signals are not self-canceling, so sometimes a rider will inadvertently leave one on.  Don’t assume that just because the signal is on the rider is about to make a move.
  5. Give motorcycles plenty of room.  Don’t tailgate and don’t cut them off.  Remember that they need plenty of room to stop and maneuver safely.

Tips for motorcycle riders:

  1. Don’t ride when the weather is bad – you’re at a much greater risk for an accident.
  2. Make sure you can be seen – wear bright protective gear, and use reflective tape and stickers to increase your conspicuity.  Also, ride where you can clearly be seen by other drivers.
  3. Protect yourself – wear a DOT-compliant helmet every time you ride.
  4. Always use your turn signal when you want to change lanes or make a turn – even if you don’t think anyone will see it.
  5. Use hand signals with turn signals to make your intentions even more clear to other motorists.

Motorcyclists and other drivers need to work together to ensure that the rights all road users are respected.  So many traffic accidents are avoidable, and so many lives are needlessly lost every year.

Despite your best efforts, you may find yourself the victim of a serious motorcycle accident.  To discuss your case with an attorney and see if we can help you get the compensation and justice you deserve, please contact the personal injury attorneys at Tavss Fletcher.



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