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May is Motorcycle Safety Month: Georgia Looking to Overturn Dismal Accident Stats

A series of consecutive years with a high number of motorcycle accidents in Georgia has galvanized the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety into action. The GOHS has declared May as Motorcycle Awareness Safety Month in the state.

The campaign started with the GOHS taking its motorcycle safety message to the people through the Georgia Motorcycle Awareness Tour. Georgia’s director Bob Dallas traveled the state on a motorcycle along with law enforcement officers. The tour kicked off in Carroll County and winded through Albany, Savannah and Augusta before ending in Atlanta.

According to the GOHS, between 2006 and 2007, there has been an increase of 113 percent in motorcycle accidents in Georgia. In 2000, there were 2,049 crashes involving motorcyclists, and that number rose to 4367 in 2007. The number of people killed in the same period rose by a staggering 161 percent from 62 deaths in 2000 to 162 deaths in 2007. According to experts, this spike had had to do with an increase in the number of motorcycles in the state. Motorcycle use has risen in popularity, and so have the number of accidents involving theses vehicles.

As summer kicks off and the number of motorcyclists on the roads increases again, the GOHS is warning riders of the special challenge they face. For instance, motorcycles because they are smaller, may often be concealed in a motorist’s blind spot. These vehicles are narrower, and so can easily missed when a car is backing out in a parking lot, or at an intersection. According to the GOHS, a majority of such accidents actually occur in the daytime at an intersection where the motorist simply didn’t see the motorcycle. Besides, motorcycle riders deserve a special safety campaign because of their higher risk of injuries in an accident.

The GOHS encourages motorcycle riders to ride in a defensive mode. Always watching out for the movements of other vehicles on the road, and prepare to take defensive action if necessary. Besides, motorists are encouraged to follow all safe driving practices, including wearing protective personal gear like helmets that are approved by the Department of Transportation.

Georgia’s authorities have been proactive in conducting safety campaigns addressed at motorists, but pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists who are vulnerable to collisions with automobiles tend to be ignored to some extent. Campaigns like the Georgia Motorcycle Awareness Tour are more than just PR exercises by the GOHS. They are undertaken to drill home the safety message to both motorists and motorcyclists. Atlanta motorcycle accident lawyers commend the GOHS efforts to prevent accidents and increase motorcycle safety.