May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, a month that urges all drivers to share the road with motorcyclists. Due to their size and visibility, motorcyclists are at an increased risk of being injured or killed in an Ohio motorcycle crash.
For example, in Ohio last year, motorcyclists accounted for 13.7% of fatalities resulting from the total number of motor vehicle crashes, a surprisingly high percentage given that motorcycles are estimated to have accounted for less than 1% of the total number of motor vehicles involved in crashes during the same year. Keeping an eye out for motorcyclists is an essential first step toward keeping our roads safe for all.
At Kisling, Nestico & Redick, we’ve helped numerous individuals recover compensation for losses due to a motorcycle accident. Our experienced Ohio personal injury attorneys are familiar with the devastation these accidents can cause, which is why we’re troubled to learn of Ohio’s record concerning motorcycle accidents, accidents which should be preventable.
10 Ways to Keep Motorcyclists Safe
- Keep an eye out — Motorcyclists face extra safety challenges due to their size and visibility on the road. Keeping an extra eye out and using one’s rear- and side-view mirrors can help to keep motorcyclists safe on the road.
- Give motorcyclists a full lane — Always give a motorcyclist a full lane width when driving. Sharing a lane with a motorcyclist is highly dangerous, even if it appears to be possible.
- Watch out at intersections — Any time your view at an intersection is obstructed, proceed with caution, just as you would for pedestrians, as motorcyclists may be oncoming and just out of view. Scanning your environment and proceeding with caution can help to prevent potential accidents.
- Double-check when lane changing — Always use your rear- and side-view mirrors when changing lanes and check for motorcyclists more than once. Due to blind spots on your vehicle and the poor visibility of motorcyclists, you may not see a motorcyclist on your first check. Always double-check your mirrors, especially when changing lanes.
- Understand motorcyclists’ driving patterns — Motorcycles are built differently than cars or trucks and, as a result, they’re driven differently. Understanding motorcycle riding practices, such as downshifting and weaving, can help motor vehicle drivers better anticipate the driving patterns of motorcyclists.
- Follow at a greater distance — Give motorcyclists greater distance when following than you would a car or truck—three or four seconds is recommended by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This will ensure that a motorcyclist has enough time to safely maneuver or to come to an emergency stop.
- Observe turn signals — If you see a motorcyclist signaling that he or she intends to turn, wait to let the motorcyclist turn before moving ahead. And if you’re unsure if a motorcyclist is turning, proceed with caution, as not all motorcycles are equipped with self-cancelling turn signals.
- Don’t drive distracted — Distracted driving increases one’s risk of getting in an accident, including with motorcyclists. Keep everyone safe by keeping your eyes on the road and any distractions away from your vehicle.
- Turn with caution — Before making a turn, double or triple check the positioning of any nearby motorcyclists to ensure that you’re turning safely. Turning with caution is especially important at intersections.
- Share the road — Sharing the road with motorcyclists isn’t just about giving motorcyclists space on the road; it’s about looking out for, safeguarding, and learning to be a better driver in the company of riders.
How the Experienced Ohio Personal Injury Attorneys at Kisling, Nestico & Redick Can Help You
At KNR, we have helped countless motorcyclists who have been injured due to the negligence and lack of awareness of a motor vehicle driver. Our Ohio personal injury attorneys have seen first-hand the pain and damage a motorcycle accident can cause, which is why we urge everyone to observe Motorcycle Awareness Month.We have 11 locations throughout Ohio, including Canton, Columbus, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Toledo, and more – find a location near you. If an Ohio motorcycle crash has affected you or a loved one, call us at 1-800-HURT-NOW for a free, initial consultation.