More than meets eye in motorcycle crashes
This is regarding the Aug. 28 editorial titled “Slam brakes on uptick in cycle crashes, deaths in Ohio and US.”
I am State Legislative Director and local Region Zero Legislative Director of ABATE of Ohio Inc., (American Motorcyclists Aimed Toward Education), a motorcycle rights organization dedicated to protecting rights of motorcycle riders, along with enhancing education and safety issues for all road users.
I have ridden a motorcycle across the country eight times, ridden in all 50 states and two other countries, amassing over half-million miles. Therefore, I believe I speak with some knowledge. I fully agree with the statement in the first paragraph that along with the pleasure of the freedom of riding “come clear and present dangers.” I will not dispute many statistics cited in the editorial, but my research in local crashes has shown they are not all correct. Instead, I want the editorial staff, readers and the public to be aware of additional statistics.
It is important to recognize the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, NHTSA Traffic Safety Facts for 2022 states that “For the purposes of this fact sheet, motorcycles include two and three-wheeled motorcycles, off-road motorcycles, mopeds, motor scooters, mini-bikes and pocket bikes.” Many of these vehicles are not for road use and skew statistics reported in the editorial.
The editorial listed statistics regarding motorcycle helmet usage. What it did not mention is according to the National Safety Council’s Motorcycle Traffic Death Overview in 2021, in fatalities, 58.78% of motorcyclists were wearing helmets; 37.95% were not; and 3.27% was undetermined. Helmet use should remain a choice for all Americans to make for themselves.
The most important factor associated with motorcycle fatalities is according to the American Motorcycle Association, “The most comprehensive study ever conducted into motorcycle accidents found that nearly 75 percent of motorcycle accidents involve another vehicle, and that in almost two-thirds of those crashes, the cause could be traced to the other vehicle violating the motorcyclist’s right-of-way.”
Limiting motorcycle crashes and savings lives is the responsibility of every road user, and motorcyclists need other road users to pay more attention.
ABATE of Ohio Inc. will continue to promote safe, educated motorcycle riding through efforts to emphasize all riders be endorsed, ride alcohol free and attend rider training courses. We promote motorist education, supporting informational road signs and billboards and encouraging motorcycle awareness in driver’s education and interstate highway sign displays. Abate of Ohio Inc. has been a key factor in development, implementation and continuance of Motorcycle Ohio, mentioned in the editorial.
For more information on ABATE of Ohio Inc, go to ABATE.com. Thank you.
“LION MAN” DODGE