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Drivers need to look out for motorcyclists

Three out of five fatal motorcycle crashes involve another vehicle, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). In many of these accidents, it was the driver that was at fault, not the motorcyclist.

The NHTSA launched a two-pronged campaign in 2017 to try and reduce the number of motorcycle crashes. It aimed to help people ride more safely and take fewer risks, and to educate car drivers on how to share the road with motorcycles and cause them fewer accidents. These are some of the things the NHTSA highlighted:

  • Car drivers have substantial blind spots:  A driver can only see about 60% of the area around his car. Drivers need to know their blind spots and take extra effort to check.
  • Drivers underestimate the speed of motorcycles:  Drivers make speed judgments based on cars. They think they have enough time to make a maneuver before the motorcycle reaches, but they often do not. They must allow more time.
  • Drivers do not notice when motorcycles slow down : Motorcycles often use their gears to slow down or release the throttle. Neither of these switches on the brake lights, so drivers must give extra space.
  • Drivers can struggle to spot motorcycles:  Bikes are less visible than cars. Drivers need to check twice before making a turn. 42% of motorcycle fatalities involving another vehicle were caused by drivers turning left.

When a driver says, “I’m sorry. I didn’t see you,” they may be telling the truth.” However, it is little compensation when they have knocked you off your bike. Seek legal help if you or a motorcyclist you love has been injured or killed in a Buffalo motorcycle crash. Drivers need to take extra care to look out for motorcyclists.