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Protect yourself from a serious motorcycle accident

Protect yourself from a serious motorcycle accidentMotorcycle accidents are some of the deadliest crashes on the roads. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that motorcycle deaths occur 27 times more often than in other types of vehicles.

Given these odds, it is vital for riders to keep themselves as safe as possible to avoid accidents or reduce the severity of injuries if one occurs. It is also vital for drivers of other vehicles to be aware of and share the road with motorcycles.

According to the NHTSA, 4,976 people died and approximately 88,000 were injured in motorcycle crashes in 2015 (the latest data available). These statistics illustrate just how vulnerable motorcyclists are on roads in Indiana and across the United States.

Below are some guidelines for staying safe on the road:

  • Learn to share the road - Safe driving practices from motorists and riders can help to reduce fatalities and injuries on roadways. Motorists should be aware of the challenges motorcycles face on the road, such as reduced visibility.
  • Ensure you are road ready - It is important to make sure you are properly trained and licensed and that you have practiced operating the motorcycle that you plan to ride.
  • Be sure your motorcycle is safe - Check the tire pressure and tread depth, hand and foot brakes, headlights and signal indicators, and fluid levels before every ride. Also check for signs of oil and gas leaks, and ensure cargo and passengers are safe.
  • Wear proper protection - Always wear a DOT-approved helmet to protect your head from serious injury. Arms and legs should be covered, ideally with leather or denim, and protect your eyes with goggles.
  • Ride responsibly - Obey posted speed limits, traffic lights and lane markers. Always signal your turns and look for vehicles before changing lanes. In short, drive defensively.
  • Avoid alcohol and drugs - These substances severely impair your judgment, coordination, reaction times and level of alertness. Decrease your crash risk by being alcohol and drug free.

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