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In late January, a 65-year-old man from Covington, Georgia died as a result of injuries sustained during accident while he was riding his motorcycle. According to news reports, the accident occurred after an individual driving a sedan turned left into the path of the motorcycle. News about unfortunate accidents such as this one remind us just how important highway safety is. For motorcyclists, in particular, there are some serious safety concerns. As we move into spring and summer, and motorcycle enthusiasts get back out on the road in greater numbers, here are some safety tips from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration to keep in mind to help prevent accidents from happening and also to minimize the risk of injury when they do occur:

  • Always wear a certified helmet and eye protection whenever you ride a motorcycle
  • Wear the appropriate motorcycle-riding attire, which includes: jackets and pants made of durable material; gloves to assure a firm grip on controls; proper footwear to protect the feet and ankles.
  • Follow all normal traffic laws that apply to regular vehicles
  • Avoid riding between lanes of slow moving or stopped traffic
  • Drive defensively by being alert at intersections; checking rearview mirrors regularly; and watching the road surface and traffic in anticipation of hazards
  • Assume that you are invisible to other motorists and operate your motorcycle with that in mind by: positioning yourself so that you can be seen by other vehicles, using your headlights even during the daytime hours, wear brightly-colored clothing.

Above all, motorcyclists should educate themselves on the inherent risks to riding a motorcycle, such as the lack of protection during a crash, diminished stability while riding, and greater susceptibility to poor road conditions. Many of these risks, however, can be managed by following basic safety principles.

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