05-18-2003

03NR16 - NHTSA Proposes Study of Characteristics of Motorcycle Operators

MRF E-MAIL NEWS
Motorcycle Riders Foundation
P.O. Box 1808
Washington, DC 20013-1808
202-546-0983 (voice)
202-546-0986 (fax)
wyld@mrf.org (e-mail)
http://www.mrf.org (website)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Tom Wyld
Phone: 202-546-0983

May 18, 2003

#03NR16 - NHTSA Proposes Study of Characteristics of Motorcycle Operators

The tragic and steady increase in motorcyclist fatalities over the past few years is on every rider's mind. It has added urgency to the long-standing call from the Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF) and State Motorcyclists' Rights Organizations (SMROs) for better funding of state rider education and motorist awareness. It has prompted a call by the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) for a new crash causation study. It has also prompted the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to consider a new research project that focuses on talking directly to 4,000 riders of NHTSA's choosing.

Is it time for more TALK? Or is it time for ACTION!!!

The MRF wants to know what you think about NHTSA's latest research proposal. We encourage you to contact Tom Wyld at wyld@mrf.org to give him your input so that he can incorporate the thoughts and opinions of SMROs and motorcyclists nationwide into the MRF's public comments to NHTSA. In addition, the MRF urges SMROs and individuals nationwide to submit their own public comments to NHTSA regarding its proposal prior to the June 30, 2003 deadline. You can find NHTSA's research proposal and the guidelines for submitting public comments on the MRF website at http://www.mrf.org/TEA-03.php.

In its proposal, NHTSA states that it hopes to interview 4,000 riders in California, Maryland, Michigan, New York, Texas, Virginia and Florida to learn about rider "characteristics, attitudes and behaviors...[and compare] the training, experience, attitudes and behaviors of those operators who have been involved in crashes versus those who have not." The winning research firm will conduct "face-to-face interviews...at sponsored events, races, and... motorcycle club meetings and popular riding locations."

Instead of TALK, the MRF is calling for ACTION!!! Bolstering motorcycle safety funds with modest federal dollars to be used for the advancement of rider education and motorist awareness of motorcycles is the leading initiative of the joint SMRO-MRF agenda for TEA-03 (the reauthorization of the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century). For details on the MRF's TEA-03 initiatives, visit the MRF website at http://www.mrf.org/TEA-03.php. The MRF's agenda calls for a modest $5 million annually for the life of the five-year TEA-03 plan for states that maintain or increase their rider training budgets.

Contrast the MRF's requested $5 million with NHTSA's request for $56 million in research and analysis funds for FY 2003 alone, the funding source for this interview initiative (source: Dr. Jeffrey W. Runge, M.D., testimony before the House Highways and Transit Subcommittee, March 4, 2003). Contrast the MRF's $5 million request with the massive NHTSA Highway Safety Behavioral Research request for TEA-03: $88,452,000 over five years.

Will NHTSA simply fund more TALK over the next five years? Or will NHTSA finally fund ACTION!!! The MRF encourages you to become part of the decision-making process by submitting your public comments to NHTSA regarding its latest research proposal.

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(c)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.
- MRF: My Ride is Freedom -

The first motorcyclists' rights organization to establish a full-time legislative advocacy presence in Washington. The Motorcycle Riders Foundation is the only Washington voice devoted exclusively to the street rider. MRF established MRFPAC in the early 1990s to advocate the election of candidates who would champion the cause of rider safety and rider freedom. MRF proudly claims state motorcyclists' rights organizations and the very founders of the American rider rights movement among its leading members. Motorcyclists worldwide can thumb-start their search for rider rights and safety on the web at www.mrf.org.

All information contained in this release is copyrighted. Reproduction permitted with attribution. The Motorcycle Riders Foundation, incorporated in 1987, is an independent, membership-based national motorcyclists' rights organization headquartered in Washington D.C. which operates in co-partnership with State Motorcyclists' Rights Organizations nationwide. The MRF is involved in federal and state legislation and regulation, motorcycling safety education, training, licensing and public awareness. The MRF provides individual and SMRO member-volunteers with guidance, support and information to protect motorcyclists' rights and advance motorcycling and its associated lifestyle. The MRF sponsors annual regional and national educational seminars for motorcyclists' rights activists and publishes a bi-monthly newsletter, THE MRF REPORTS.

Voice: 202-546-0983, Fax: 202-546-0986, E-Mail: wyld@mrf.org, website: http://www.mrf.org



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