Motorcycle enthusiasts love the feeling of freedom that comes with riding. Unfortunately, that same freedom can put a rider’s life in jeopardy when it comes to motorcycle accidents and injuries. May is Motorcycle Awareness Month, which calls attention to the dangers associated with motorcycle crashes and collisions, as well as what drivers and riders alike can do to prevent them. Regardless of your vehicle of choice, it is important to be aware of precautions you can take to prevent injuries to yourself as well as others on the road.
Texas Road Safety for Motorcyclists
The American Motorcycle Association (AMA) promotes Motorcycle Awareness Month as a way to encourage riders to practice motorcycle safety, while educating drivers on how to share the road in order to prevent serious and potentially life-threatening motorcycle accidents. According to the AMA, states throughout the country will use this opportunity to raise awareness of safety programs specifically designed to prevent the number accidents and injuries.
In terms of promoting Texas road safety for motorcyclists, the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) has implemented a program called “Share the Road: Look Twice for Motorcyclists,” urging motorists to be particularly aware of bikers at intersections and during lane changes, which is when most motorcycle accidents occur. According to TxDOT, more than 450 Texas bikers lost their lives in 2015, and close to 2,000 were seriously injured in these crashes. In order to prevent injuries and fatalities, TxDOT advises drivers to do the following:
- Look twice for motorcyclists, particularly at intersections and when changing lanes.
- Always use your turn signals so bikers are aware of when you intend to switch lanes.
- Allow motorcyclists a full lane for driving.
- Do not engage in tailgating or follow a motorcyclist too closely.
- Always assume they are closer than they appear.
Motorcycle Safety Awareness
Although educating drivers is an important goal of Motorcycle Awareness Month, it is important for riders to protect themselves by being aware of the ways in which they can prevent accidents from occurring. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) advises all riders to follow the following safety tips:
- Make yourself visible when riding, and make sure your bike is equipped with the proper head, tail, and brake lights.
- In addition to using turn indicators, use hand signals to alert drivers to when you will be slowing down to make a turn.
- Obey state drunk driving laws, and do not ride if you are extremely tired or on any medications that could impair your judgment.
- Always wear the appropriate gear to help prevent injuries, such as a helmet, sunglasses, long pants, gloves, and appropriate footwear.
Motorcycle injuries can be severe and even deadly. Common injuries include bone fractures, head injuries, and painful road rash. Motorcyclists should avoid slamming on their brakes, changing lanes suddenly, weaving in and out of lanes, or any other activity that could endanger them and others on the road.
Contact Us to Discuss Your Case
If you or someone you care about has been involved in a motorcycle accident, contact The Bob Richardson Law Firm today. Our experienced Texas motorcycle accident lawyers can assist you in holding responsible parties accountable so that you can get the compensation you deserve. We serve clients in Austin, Waco, and the surrounding areas. Call or fill out our online form today to schedule a free case consultation.