National Motorcycle Safety Month’s Message to Motorists: ‘Share the Road’

Saturday, May 14, the driver of a pickup truck makes a wide turn, loses control of his vehicle and crashes into a motorcycle, killing the 53-year-old woman driving it. The pickup continues traveling in the wrong direction until it crashes into a second motorcycle, also killing that driver, a 47-year-old woman. (1)

Saturday, May 7, a motorcyclist dies after crashing into the back of a car while traveling on the Atlantic City Expressway. (2)

Sunday, May 1, a 60-year-old Fair Lawn man dies as a result of injuries sustained after crashing his motorcycle into a fence at the Essex County Airport. (3)

Wednesday, April 27, a 38-year-old Vineland woman is injured after her motorcycle crashes into a car pulling out of a driveway on Fenimore Avenue. (4)

Sunday, April 17, two motorcyclists die in two separate accidents, one on the Garden State Parkway and the other on Everett Road in Middletown. (5)

Sunday, April 10, an accident in the eastbound lanes of Route 80 in Paterson claims the life of a 27-year-old motorcyclist. (6)

According to the Federal Highway Authority, about 2,500 motorcyclists a year are involved in accidents in New Jersey alone, resulting in about 70 deaths and 2,000 injuries. Statistics say those involved in motorcycle accidents have a 75% chance of being injured. More than 50% of motorcycle accidents occur at intersections and over two-thirds are the result of other drivers not seeing the motorcycle. (7)

May is National Motorcycle Safety Month and this year’s message is “Share the Road.” In New Jersey, the campaign is co-sponsored by the Motor Vehicle Commission and the Division of Highway Traffic Safety. (8)

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), New Jersey is one of the safest places in the country for motorcyclists. Still in 2010, 70 people died here in motorcycle accidents, representing a 56% increase in fatalities since 1992 when Lance Owens, brother of New Jersey’s own Queen Latifah, died in such a crash. Over that same period, total traffic fatalities decreased 23%. (8)

Warmer weather and increased gas prices lead to an increase in popularity of motorcycles. Motorcyclists currently represent 5% of all licensed drivers in New Jersey. This month’s safety campaign urges all motorists to be more aware of motorcycles. (8)

(1) http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2011/05/post_202.html

(2) http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2011/05/man_killed_in_motorcycle_accid.html

(3) http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2011/05/fairlawn_man_dies_in_motorcycl.html

(4) http://www.nj.com/cumberland/index.ssf/2011/04/vineland_woman_recovering_from.html

(5) http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2011/04/two_die_in_separate_motorcycle.html

(6) http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2011/04/person_dies_in_motorcylce_acci.html

(7) http://www.state.nj.us/lps/hts/motorcycle/index.html

(8) http://www.northjersey.com/columnists/121617484_For_safety_s_sake__share_the_road_with_a_biker.html?c=y&page=1