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Midwest Motorcycle Safety Saves Lives

March 2017

The first fatal motorcycle crash of 2017 in Minnesota happened this March in Redwood County. Authorities said that the 60-year-old driver had been drinking and was not wearing a helmet- a stark reminder that consuming alcohol before driving and not wearing a helmet are two of the most significant factors that contribute to fatal motorcycle crashes. As winter weather warms up early this year, drivers and motorcyclists alike are cautioned to stay safe and share the roads responsibly.

Helmets Save Lives

According to a 2013 report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, helmets have saved about $2.8 billion in economic loss and 1,630 lives. Helmets lower the risk of head injuries by nearly 70 percent, and they reduce fatality risk by 37 percent. If all motorcyclists had worn helmets in 2013, the United States would have saved an extra $1.1 billion. The CDC’s goals are to fight for universal helmet laws and to find ways to prevent motorcycle injuries and deaths. 

Helmets can even save lives when alcohol is a contributing factor in a crash. However, drivers should avoid consuming any alcohol before operating a motorcycle since they are more vulnerable than motorists and the riding process requires optimal alertness.

Midwest Motorcycle Safety

Motorcyclists and motorists can help each other stay safer and avoid costly or fatal accidents by following essential safety tips. Serious motorcycle accidents are not just a problem in Minnesota. Motorcyclists across North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa and Wisconsin are also hitting the roads to take advantage of the nice weather. To learn more about safety in these specific states, visit the corresponding state sponsored motorcycle safety website:

Safety Tips For Motorcyclists

Both new and seasoned riders should brush up on their safety skills each year. Here are some vital tips to remember:

  • Learn to counter-steer and lean correctly.
  • Always look and think several seconds ahead by making a visual measurement.
  • Always employ both brakes when stopping or slowing.
  • Never allow total loss of control when facing an imminent crash.
  • Always assume that other drivers cannot see any motorcycles, and drive accordingly.
  • When riding in a group, hold regular meetings, ride in a logical formation and always arrive with a full tank of gas.

Safety Tips For Motorists

Drivers are not used to seeing motorcyclists so early in the year. These are some important driving safety tips:

  • Check all blind spots constantly for motorcycles.
  • Look twice before making a left turn.
  • Look carefully when it is raining since rain makes motorcycles nearly invisible.
  • Always use turn signals.
  • If a motorcyclist makes eye contact, nod to acknowledge the person.
  • Watch for motorcycles hidden behind large trucks.
  • Keep in mind that motorcycle turn signals do not automatically cancel.
  • Always give a motorcyclist plenty of space.

Protect Your Rights in a Motorcycle Accident

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, contact Schwebel, Goetz & Sieben. Our board-certified attorneys have over 500 years of combined experience, and they are committed to achieving the best outcome for your case. We handle the stress of required legal proceedings while you focus on recovering and moving forward in life. Please contact us for a free and confidential consultation at 612-377-7777 or toll free at 1-800-752-4265.

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