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May is Motorcycle Awareness Month in N.H.

POV shot of young man riding on a motorcycle. Hands of motorcyclist on a street

Drivers of all vehicles need to safely share the road

Motorcyclists are vulnerable out on the road. It only takes one inattentive or negligent driver to cause a motorcycle accident that can leave a motorcyclist seriously injured or killed. May has been declared Motorcycle Awareness Month in New Hampshire, joining a national campaign, with the intent of making the roads safer.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) notes that Motorcycle Awareness Month is a time to remind “vehicle drivers and motorists that safe driving and riding practices and cooperation from all road users will help reduce the number of fatalities and injuries on our nation’s highways.”

Motorcyclists are at risk on roads and highways

Motorcycle crashes remain a serious problem:

  • New Hampshire had 25 motorcycle accident fatalities in 2020, down from 30 the year before.
  • Across the country, 5,579 motorcyclists were killed in traffic crashes in 2021, an 11% increase from 2019, when there were 5,044 motorcycle accident fatalities.
  • An estimated 82,528 motorcyclists were injured in motorcycle crashes in 2020, down from 83,814 the year before.
  • In 2020, motorcyclists were roughly 28 times more likely than passenger vehicle occupants to be killed in a crash in 2020, per vehicle mile traveled.
  • Motorcyclists aged 55 and over accounted for 27% of motorcycle crash fatalities in 2020. From 2011 to 2020, motorcycle crash fatalities rose steadily, from 1,087 to 1,486.
  • The average age of motorcyclists killed in crashes in 2020 was 43.
  • In 2020, about half of motorcycle accident fatalities occurred on the weekend.

Motorcyclists have a responsibility to follow all traffic laws. But other drivers also have a responsibility to take steps to help avoid motorcycle accidents. These are tips from the NHTSA:

  • Watch for motorcycles, which are smaller and more difficult to see on the road. Check all mirrors and blind spots. Also, be aware that the size of motorcycles can make it easy to misjudge their speed and distance.
  • Remember that motorcyclists have the same rights on the road as other drivers.
  • Allow an extra following distance behind motorcycles to allow space for them to maneuver or stop.
  • Share the road, but not the lane – give motorcyclists the full width of the lane.
  • Be extra careful at intersections, especially when making a turn. Don’t turn if your view is obstructed, and check carefully for motorcyclists first.

Get legal advice from a New Hampshire motorcycle accident attorney

Because motorcyclists don’t have a lot of protection in a crash, they can suffer serious injuries. These include broken bones, head injuries, back injuries, biker’s arm, and road rash. Medical expenses can add up quickly. Negligent drivers may deny responsibility, and insurance companies will try to pay as little money as possible to crash victims.

That’s why you need experienced legal representation on your side if you’ve been hurt in a New Hampshire motorcycle crash. At Burns, Bryant, Cox, Rockefeller & Durkin, P.A., our motorcycle accident lawyers can protect your rights and fight for the financial compensation you deserve.

If you were in a crash in Dover or Portsmouth, contact us to schedule a free consultation.

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