Monday, May 20, 2013

NHTSA’s Reminders Regarding Sharing the Road with Motorcyclists

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The month of May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month. It is a national initiative that seeks to encourage motorists and motorcyclists to look out and “share the road” with each other, and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is one of the many traffic safety organizations to spearhead the said awareness campaign.

Statistics from the NHTSA shows that despite the decrease in auto accident deaths in the United States over the years, mishaps involving motorcycles otherwise increased, especially during the past 14 years. The only exception was in 2009, where there was a 16-percent decline.

Part of the NHTSA’s aim this Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month is to provide motorists the knowledge as to how to deal with motorcyclists on the road. As such, the federal traffic safety agency has a list of reminders for drivers to help prevent motorcycle deaths and injuries. Here are some of them:
  • Avoid distracted driving. This will prevent collisions with motorcyclists and other further tragic consequences.
  • Use signal lights before changing lanes or merging with traffic. That way, motorcyclists will be able to determine which lane to position, therefore avoiding collisions.
  • Check rear view and side mirrors while entering or leaving a lane. A motorcyclist can be hidden in a vehicle’s blind spot, which is why the motorist must check both mirrors before making a turn at the intersection or while changing lanes.
  • Provide motorcyclists the right of way. Give the motorcyclist enough time to turn left or right on an intersection or making a lane change before proceeding.
  • Always look out for road hazards. What may seem to be a minor inconvenience for a motorist may be a major one for a motorcyclist. The latter may change speed or adjust position upon encountering road hazards such as potholes, gravel, and wet and slippery surfaces, among others.
  • Allow distance when following a motorcycle. This is recommended since motorcycles stop quicker than most vehicles, especially when they make a maneuver or a full stop.

Meanwhile, every Los Angeles auto accident attorney agrees with the NHTSA’s reminders, likewise advising car, truck, and other four-wheeled vehicles to watch out and share the road with other motorcyclists.


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