Inaccurate Study on Motorcycle Safety Praised by Governors Highway Safety Association.
Recently the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) praised the inaccurate study on motorcycle safety done by the Government Accountability Office (GAO).
What both reports failed to tell you is that motorcyclists are safer now than since 1984. Hereís why; in 2010 fatalities were almost identical to 1984, around 4,500 motorcyclists a year. However, what they did not tell you is that in 1984 5.5 million motorcycles were registered in the USA. Compare that to the 7 million registered motorcycles in 2010. Thatís 1.5 million more motorcycles and the same amount of fatalities.
Source: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) and Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Highway Statistics.
Both the GAO and the GHSA are pushing for what they believe is the silver bullet of motorcycle safety, the mandatory helmet law. Proper riding gear should be left to the rider, not the government. When you look at States like Tennessee and Arizona that have roughly the same size population and then break down fatality numbers it becomes clear that helmet laws do not have significant influence. Tennessee has a mandatory helmet law and 121 fatalities for 2010. Arizona has no mandatory helmet law and had 88 fatalities for the same period of time. Even right over the border from Tennessee their neighboring Kentucky, which also has no mandatory helmet law, had just 87 fatalities in 2010.
Another area where the Government agencies continue to overlook when dealing with motorcycle safety is rider education. If we cannot teach people to ride motorcycles we will have more and more fatalities.
Take New Hampshire for example. According to Robert LeTourneau, New Hampshire State Official Motorcycle Education Specialist they have had 15 fatal motorcycle accidents of riders who took the class since 1990. Thatís out of over 44,000 students trained in the same time period and .034% of fatal motorcycle accidents. All with no mandatory helmet law.
While mandatory helmet laws look good on paper they rarely work in the real world. The best approach to motorcycle safety is and will always be rider education and awareness campaigns. Teaching people how to ride a motorcycle in the proper way and educating the general public to look for motorcycles, which can only benefit pedestrians and bicyclists as well, will avoid crashes and save lives.
Ride With The LeadersTM by joining the MRF at http://www.mrf.org/join.php or call 1-202-546-0983Registration is easy and secure for MRF Regional and Meeting of the Minds conferences. Visit our website at http://www.mrf.org/events.php for further details and registration information.Send in your nominations and donations for the MRF's Young Activist Scholarship fund today. For complete details, visit http://www.mrfae.org/yas.php.Sign up today for the MRF's new roadside assistance program by visiting http://www.mrf.org/mrfroadside.php The program is available to MRF members and non-MRF members.© All Information contained in this release is copyrighted. Reproduction permitted with attribution. The Motorcycle Riders Foundation, incorporated in 1987, is a membership-based, national motorcyclists' rights organization headquartered in Washington, DC. The first motorcyclists' rights organization to establish a full-time presence in Washington, DC, the Motorcycle Riders Foundation is the only Washington voice devoted exclusively to the street rider. The MRF established MRFPAC in the early 1990s to advocate the election of candidates who would champion the cause of rider safety and rider freedom.The MRF proudly claims state motorcyclists' rights organizations and the very founders of the American riders' rights movement among its leading members. The MRF is involved in federal and state legislation and regulations, motorcycling safety education, training, and public awareness. The MRF provides members and state motorcyclists' rights organizations with direction and information, and sponsors annual regional and national educational seminars for motorcyclists rights activists, as well as publishing a bi-monthly newsletter, THE MRF REPORTS.