Indiana celebrates Motorcycle Safety & Awareness Month

Spring has sprung in Indiana, and few are more excited about the nice weather than motorcyclists are. That bike may have sat idly in the garage all winter, but it's time to get out and ride.

Living in a state with cold winters isn't just an inconvenience for motorcyclists. It also makes the riding season more dangerous. Some motorcyclists get out of practice, and just as importantly, drivers of cars and trucks forget to keep an eye out for riders that they haven't seen all winter. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration notes that across the United States, 62 percent of fatal motorcycle accidents occur between May and September.

Perhaps it is fitting, then, that May has been designated Motorcycle Safety and Awareness Month in Indiana and other states. Various events and educational campaigns will be held throughout the month to prepare all motorists for the months ahead.

Motorcycle safety is a shared responsibility between motorcyclists and car/truck drivers. For their part, riders should take basic precautions like wearing a helmet and other appropriate safety gear. It's also a good idea to take a formal training course in riding safety, even if you don't think you need one. Certain studies have shown that nine out of 10 motorcycle accident victims taught themselves how to ride.

For other motorists, motorcycle safety is largely dependent upon motorcycle awareness. Too many injurious and fatal accidents occur each year because drivers of cars and trucks fail to keep a lookout for motorcyclists. Dangerous left turns, sudden lane changes and driving too close to motorcyclists can and do lead to serious accidents.

If you want to observe Motorcycle Safety and Awareness Month, the easiest way to do so is to show others that you are willing to share the road. We all have to work together to prevent motorcycle accidents, and courteous driving/riding is a good start.