June brings an end to Motorcycle Awareness Month, but our Florida motorcycle lawyers want to remind all drivers to continue to be vigilant for the two-wheeled vehicles sharing the road with you throughout the year. Unfortunately, according to a recent study, drivers need to take more care when traveling the highways with motorcycles – too many motorcyclists are dying on American roadways.
The Governors Highway Safety Association reported last month that, “no progress was made in reducing motorcyclist deaths in 2011.” The report cited the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) statistics that 2011 saw a nearly 2% decline over 2010, and the fewest passenger car occupant fatalities since 1949. But motorcycle fatalities remained unchanged at about 4,500 in both 2011 and 2010.
According to 2010 Florida Traffic Statistics, in 2010, the last year data is available, there were 7,784 total Florida motorcycle accidents. Of those, 6,686 motorcyclists were seriously injured and 383 motorcyclists or their passengers died. The GHSA used preliminary 2011 data for its report. It reports that Florida saw an increase of 11 motorcycle fatalities over 2010. A total of 303 cyclists died in the first 9 months of 2011 compared to 292 in 2010.
The GHSA evaluated motorcycle fatality data in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Primarily, the lack of change in fatalities was blamed on the warm weather and the rise in gas prices for bringing out more cyclists. In fact, Florida officials specifically cited “increases in motorcycle endorsements [licenses]” for the continued high rate of motorcyclists’ deaths.
However, the GHSA blames a lack of helmet laws for adding to the fatalities. It points out that Florida repealed the state’s helmet law in 2000. With the repeal, motorcyclist fatalities increased 81% in Florida.
“Enacting universal helmet laws in the 31 states that lack them is the quickest and most effective method to increase helmet use and reduce motorcyclist head injuries and fatalities,” according to the report.
The GHSA recommends that apart from helmet use, states also adopt strategies that will train all motorcycle operators, reduce speeding, reduce alcohol impairment, and encourage other drivers to share the road with motorcyclists.
Our Treasure Coast motorcycle accident attorneys echo the findings of the GHSA by asking Florida motorcyclists to wear a safety helmet – regardless of the law. We also continue to urge all Florida drivers to stay alert, focused and sober when driving our highways.
Injured in a Florida Motorcycle Accident?
A Florida motorcycle accident caused by another driver can leave you with serious, life-altering injuries. You need a motorcycle accident lawyer to stand up for your legal rights. It’s reassuring to know you can trust the law firm of Philip DeBerard, Injury Attorney. Our Florida motorcycle wreck lawyers have experience with vehicle accident claims, including those involving motorcycles.
If you’ve had a serious motorcycle accident and you need help, turn to the law firm of Philip DeBerard, Injury Attorney. Call 888-733-5675 now to speak with a compassionate motorcycle accident attorney or fill out our online contact form.