Over the years, motorcycles have become a very popular mode of transportation. Motorcycles use less gas than a car, and many riders enjoy being on the open road. In 2010, there were 233,434 riders licensed to operate a motorcycle and 204,402 registered motorcycles in Indiana.
However, there are also many motorcycle accidents each year. Although the number of motorcycle accidents declined from 2006 to 2009, such accidents increased by 3.6 percent from 2010 to 2011. There also was a 6.4 percent increase in motorcycle fatalities from 2010 to 2011, with 110 fatalities in 2010 and 117 in 2011.
Here are some safety tips for operating your motorcycle on the Indiana roadways:
- Education and training. Although Indiana law does not require training, it is recommended that motorcycle riders take a course on how to operate the motorcycle in any weather or traffic condition.
- Proper licensing. Every state requires that a motorcycle rider be licensed. So be sure that you are operating your motorcycle legally by getting a license.
- Maintain your equipment. Just like a car, make sure that your motorcycle is properly maintained.
- Wear a helmet. Although only riders seventeen and under are required to wear a helmet in Indiana, the most effective piece of safety equipment for motorcycle riders is a helmet, which can protect against a traumatic brain injury.
- Be aware of visibility. Because a motorcycle rider is exposed to wind, rain, bugs, and other debris, visibility can become an issue. The best way to prevent a visibility problem is to wear a visor on your motorcycle helmet.
- Follow the rules of the road. Generally speaking, the rules of the road are the same for motorcycles and cars. Follow them.