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The Florida Department of Transportation and the Florida Highway Patrol have adopted May as Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month to remind all motorists to share the road with motorcycles and be alert to bikers. One of every ten traffic fatalities is a motorcyclist. According to the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), over 4500 bikers lost their lives in traffic accidents in 2005 alone, and over half of those accidents involved another vehicle.
Due to their size, it’s not always easy to see motorcycles on the road. In addition, motorcyclists are much more vulnerable to injury and death with about 80% being injured or killed in motorcycle accidents, compared to 20% of automobile operators and passengers. And in the summer, more bikers take to the highways. So, it’s important for automobile drivers to be alert to motorcycles and share the road.
So, be on the lookout for motorcyclists this summer. Never tailgate a motorcycle. Be aware that it is easy for a motorcyle to be hidden in your blindspot. And never ever try to share a lane with a motorcycle. Motorcycles have all the rights and privileges of other vehicles on the road, inlcuding the right to an entire lane of the highway. If you’re a biker, be sure to position yourself to be seen and always wear protective gear. For more safety tips, see the following websites: