May is Motorcycle Awareness Month in Pennsylvania

Sean Sloskey cruising on his bike.
Image Credit: Nicole Polidori
Three Hearts Photography

Written by Staff



The following is a Public Service Message from the Pennsylvania DUI Association. 

As we transition to warmer weather and everything spring brings to Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania DUI Association reminds all motorists that May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month.

Once again, motorcyclists will take to the streets and highways of Pennsylvania creating additional challenges for all drivers. Motorcycles are smaller than cars or trucks and consequently less visible to other operators. Drivers are reminded to exercise additional caution during this time of year as they once again grow accustomed to the presence of motorcycles on the Commonwealth’s streets and highways.

Double checking mirrors, turning and looking and listening for the sound of a motorcycle are just some of the things motorists should be doing before executing any type of lane change or entering traffic. Motorcycle operators also bear responsibility for safe operation.

Image Credit: Nicole Polidori Three Hearts Photography

According to NHTSA, motorcyclists are 28 times more likely to be killed in a crash than other motorists. They also comprise the highest percentage of impaired drivers killed in crashes with 37% of all motorcycle fatalities alcohol impaired. It only makes sense – motorcycles don’t provide operators with the same protections as cars and trucks; therefore, even the smallest error can result in a tragedy.

According to state statistics, there were approximately 3450 motorcycle crashes in 2016 resulting in a little more than 190 fatalities.

Operation of a motorcycle demands clear perception and quick, correct decisions. Even the slightest of roadway hazards such as loose gravel or puddles can cause a crash.

Motorcycle operators should never drink and ride and they are urged to utilize extreme caution with prescription medications as any level of impairment can lead to terrible consequences.

C. Stephen Erni, Executive Director of the Pennsylvania DUI Association had this to say: “Once again, Pennsylvania’s highways will see a heavy volume of motorcycle traffic. Motorcycles present a unique challenge to all motorists as they are difficult to see and often, difficult to hear. We at the PA DUI Association want to remind all drivers that motorcycles are once again sharing the highway with them and to exercise additional caution while driving. We would also stress the safe and sensible operation of motorcycles by their operators and we remind all drivers that impaired driving is never acceptable and substantially increases the risk of a serious crash. The PA DUI Association wants everyone to enjoy all that Pennsylvania has to offer this time of year in a safe and responsible manner.”

We at the Pennsylvania DUI Association are dedicated to eliminating impaired driving across the state. Through public awareness, training and working in conjunction with the men and women of law enforcement, we strive for the day when there are no more senseless tragedies as a result of impaired driving.

“Sharing the road safely, staying aware while driving or riding, obeying speed limits, and being responsible can help keep motorcycle fatalities and injuries low,” said PennDOT Secretary Leslie S. Richards. “Taking a training course under the watchful eye of a trained instructor also goes a long way in reducing the likelihood of a crash.”

Drive safely out there!!