The return of warm weather coincides with the return of motorcycle traffic. Statistics from 2014 rank Colorado as 14th in the nation for
motorcycle ownership: that’s 173,120 registered motorcycles in the state, which averages out to 1 bike for every 29 people. Year 2014 also saw 4,586 deaths and 92,000 injuries related to motorcycle accidents, according to the Insurance Information Institute
. The Colorado Department of Transportation reported 545 fatalities statewide related to automotive accidents in 2014. It’s no secret that riding a motorcycle is dangerous--that’s part of the allure--but motorcyclists can take improve their chances of avoiding accidents and injuries. Denver auto accident attorney Mark A. Simon offers these tips:
Motorcycles are fast, powerful, and efficient. In short, they’re thrilling. They come equipped with powerful brakes, excellent handling, and grippy tires. Combined with your own brain and awareness, you can avoid or reduce injury when faced with a 2-ton automobile that comes equipped with seatbelts and airbags.
Denver auto accident attorney Mark A. Simon
- Wear a helmet. Thirty-nine percent of motorcycle riders who die of head injuries do not wear a helmet.
- Stay sober. The advice for drivers of cars, trucks, and boaters applies to motorcyclists, too. Almost half of fatalities arising from motorcycle accidents involve alcohol. This is supported by the Colorado Department of Transportation: of 50 automotive fatalities, 19 involved alcohol. A rider need not violate the legal limit for alcohol consumption to find his ability to operate a motorcycle impaired.
- Gain experience. Horsemen have an old saying that wet blankets are key to a well trained horse. The same principle applies to motorcycle riders: the more you ride, the more experience you’ll acquire, and the better rider you will become. If you’re a novice rider, ride where you’re most likely to build skill and confidence before you head for the highway at rush hour.
- Obey traffic laws. Just because you’ve got two wheels instead of four doesn’t excuse you from obeying traffic laws. Take responsibility for riding safely.
- Be vigilant. Always be aware of your surroundings. Successful bikers develop a sixth sense that alerts them to inattentive drivers, which enables them to take evasive action to avoid a collision. Unfortunately, a failure to maintain awareness of what’s going on around you can have injurious or even fatal consequences. Don’t assume that other drivers on the road will be looking out for you.
- Be visible. Never assume that other drivers can see you. Just like you, automobile and truck drivers get tired and distracted--and you might just fade into the background. Remember that motorcycles are much smaller than cars, which makes it all that much easier for you to hide in their blind spots. Using bright colors, lights, and other visual cues will help other drivers to see you.
can assist you in getting the necessary auto insurance and, after a collision, appropriate medical care. Call (303) 321-4878
to schedule a consultation.