Recent data from the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) paints a worrying picture of motorcycle safety in Texas. In 2019, 412 bikers died on Texas roads, totaling more than one fatality every single day. More than half of these collisions involve other vehicles.
TxDOT recently launched their annual “Share the Road” motorcycle safety campaign. This program seeks to raise awareness about motorcycle safety. The program hopes to provide car and truck drivers the knowledge they need to identify, accommodate and safely share the road with motorcycles.
Keep bikers safe with these guidelines
Drivers can protect motorcyclists by remembering their basics. The following guidelines can help people spot motorcycles, keep them safe and help Texas motorists become better drivers:
- Watch blind spots: Entire motorcycles may hide in a car’s blind spot. Drivers must double-check those spots before turning or changing lanes.
- Take left turns with care: Most motorcycle accidents occur within intersections when a vehicle turns left in front of them.
- Dim the headlights: Motorcyclists do not have large windshields with UV protection to guard them against a car’s bright headlights. Using one’s brights can completely blind a biker.
- Signal all turns: Every driver knows how annoying it is when another motorist fails to signal a turn. For a motorcyclist, missing a signal could be deadly. When driving near motorcycles, use signals liberally and early.
- Slow down: Motorcycles interact with the road in a way that many drivers may find unfamiliar. When driving near motorcycles, slow down and give them more space, so it is easier to react.
- Do not tailgate: Tailgating reduces a biker’s visibility and reaction times. Give them at least three car lengths of comfortable room.
- Do not drink and drive: Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is illegal in all states, yet people do it every day. Drunk driving puts everyone on the road at risk, especially bikers.
Motorcycle accident victims may seek legal recourse
Those involved in an accident while riding a motorcycle can reach out to a local attorney familiar with Texas motor vehicle law. A lawyer will assess a victim’s case and help them seek restitution.