We had a very harsh winter in Rockford—with extreme cold and lots of snow. To many people, it seemed like winter would never end. Now that it is spring, many motorcyclists are taking to the roads to enjoy some warm sunshine and beautiful scenery—heading out on Illinois Route 70 towards the Pecatonica Bottoms Nature Preserve or out Perryville Road towards Pierce Lake.
Recognizing that motorcycles will be out in force as the weather improves, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) kicked off its Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month safety campaign in May to coincide with spring riding. The goal of the campaign is to remind motorists to watch for bikers and to share the road with them.
What Motorcyclists Can Do to Stay Safe
While the campaign is directed primarily at motorists, the NHTSA also offers the following safety reminders to motorcyclists:
- Wear the right protective gear, including a helmet that meets U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) safety standards.
- Do not ride your motorcycle in bad weather.
- Ride in the center of your lane so that other drivers can see you.
- Increase your visibility by wearing bright colors and adding reflective tape to your motorcycle and gear.
- Observe the speed limit and all other traffic laws.
- Use hand and turn signals to alert other drivers that you are going to make a turn or change lanes.
- Do not ride when you are distracted or under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Before you take your motorcycle out this spring, take a few minutes to think about what you can do to increase your overall safety on the road. And if you have any additional safety tips, please share them in the space below. We want to hear from you!