CHP Spotlights Motorcycle Safety Month

Spring weather increases the number of motorcyclists on the road, and the California Highway Patrol wants drivers to share the road safely.

“Vehicle drivers and motorcyclists share responsibility for creating a safe roadway environment,” said CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow. “Drivers must be aware that motorcycles may be closer than they seem and motorcyclists must always ride defensively.”

The CHP working together with the California Office of Traffic Safety designated May 2016 as Motorcycle Safety Month. According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, the state has more than 860,000 registered motorcycles and 1.4 million licensed riders.

“California is the best state for motorcycling, for both recreation and commuting,” said Rhonda Craft, director of OTS. “To make it the safest state for motorcycling, both riders and drivers need to share the road with awareness and caution for all users.”

Preliminary estimates from the CHP’s Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System show the number of collisions involving motorcycles increased in 2014, up more than 4 percent from 2013. The number of people killed in motorcycle-involved collisions increased by nearly 11 percent, from 475 killed in 2013 to 527 killed in 2014.

Most collisions occur when a vehicle driver fails to see a motorcyclist and turns left in front of the rider, the CHP stated. Motorcyclists can help protect themselves by always using turn signals and avoiding riding in a vehicle’s blind spot.