In 2015, there were 146 motorcycle accident deaths in Illinois, which is 28 more than the previous year. Motorcycles account for only three percent of all vehicle registrations in the state, but they are involved in nearly 15 percent of total traffic deaths.
To kick start the riding season, the governor has declared May as Motorcycle Awareness Month in Illinois for the 33rd consecutive year. In partnership with safety advocates and fellow motorcycle riders, he has launched the “Start Seeing Motorcycles” campaign that will run the length of the month.
The campaign is an effort to encourage drivers across the state to improve their awareness of motorcycles while on the road. A motorcyclist himself, Governor Rauner says all motorists must play a role in keeping motorcyclists safe.
Throughout the coming months, banners and signs will be on display as a reminder to the fact that warmer weather brings out more motorcycles and that all drivers should look out for them while behind the wheel. All motorists should give motorcycle riders extra space on the roads to help prevent collisions.
Safety Advice for Motorcyclists
Motorcycle riders are asked to be proactive in improving their visibility and safety when on the roads. Riders should:
- Wear protective gear, including leather, eyewear and footwear to best protect themselves in the event of a collision or other hazards on the road.
- Wear brightly colored clothing to aide other drivers in spotting them.
- Keep their motorcycles well-maintained.
- Participate in motorcycle safety courses offered by the Illinois Department of Transportation.
- Always scan the road ahead of them, looking for hazards so they can navigate safely around them.
- Avoid distractions, including using a cell phone or wearing headphones when riding, to better improve awareness on the roads.
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