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Motorcycle Safety Month celebrated in May

Winter driving is largely limited to four-wheeled vehicles like passenger cars and trucks. But now that the weather has gotten warmer and the daylight hours are increasing, there is a greater variety of vehicles on Colorado roads. This includes bicycles and motorcycles.

In fact, May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. If you don't ride, you may think that this campaign doesn't apply to you. But the NHTSA and other safety advocates point out that motorcycle safety must be a collaborative effort between motorcyclists and all other drivers.

Tips For Motorcyclists

As a rider, there are some basic but important steps you can take to protect yourself. They include:

  • Wear a helmet
  • Make sure that other drivers can see you by wearing reflective clothing or having reflectors installed on your bike
  • Ride defensively and obey the speed limit
  • Don't assume that other drivers can always see you
  • Never ride under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Don't engage in maneuvers that could put you in danger, such as weaving in and out of traffic

Tips For Drivers

Motorcycles don't provide any external protection to riders in a crash. Therefore, crash prevention is crucial. As a driver, you should:

  • Always keep an eye out for motorcyclists around you
  • Give motorcyclists in front of you the same size buffer that you would give to larger vehicles - don't follow too closely
  • Always signal turns and lane changes and make sure that others can see these signals
  • Drive defensively around motorcyclists
  • Before making left turns in cross traffic, make absolutely sure that there is no motorcycle coming toward you. If there is, wait for it to pass by before you turn

As the unofficial start of the riding season, May is an opportune time to discuss motorcycle safety. But safety should be practiced at all times. Please make motorcycle safety a priority each and every month.

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