It’s the second post in our “What Does It Mean?” blog series, where we explore some commonly-used phrases and dive into what they mean for Arkansas drivers. Click here to read the first post, What Does “It Can Wait” Mean?
This week’s phrase is “Look Twice, Save a Life.”
Motorcycle Safety: “Look Twice, Save a Life”
“Look Twice, Save a Life” sounds like a new spin on the wise words your parents taught you as a child: “Look both ways before crossing the street.” In a sense, the two pieces of advice are related. They both focus on being aware of your surroundings and proceeding with caution.
In this case, though, “Look Twice, Save a Life” is a slogan used to promote motorcycle safety awareness.
It’s no secret that motorcycle drivers face unique safety hazards. They are more likely than other drivers to be injured or killed in an accident – 28 times more likely, to be exact (per NHTSA, 2016).
Why are bikers more at risk? Of course, motorcycles do not afford the protection that car passengers have in an enclosed vehicle with seat belts. Aside from this obvious difference, there are three top causes of motorcycle accidents: 1) lack of helmet use, 2) speeding, and 3) alcohol impairment.
Bikers are often unfairly characterized as risky drivers, but they are not always at fault in vehicle crashes. Other drivers have a responsibility to avoid accidents, as well. That’s why “Look Twice, Save a Life” is good advice for both bikers and car drivers. “Look Twice, Save a Life” means checking your blind spot, being aware of your surroundings, and using extra caution to help keep roads safe for motorcycle riders.
Safety Tips for Car Drivers
Car drivers share the responsibility to keep Arkansas roads safe! If you are a vehicle driver, you can help ensure your motorcycle-riding neighbor arrives safely at their destination.
- Expect there to be bikers on the road. This is one of the most important things you can do. Treat bikers with respect; don’t crowd them.
- Stay alert. Resist the urge to drive on “auto-pilot” when you’re on a familiar route.
- Similarly, eliminate distractions. Whether it’s talking on the phone, changing music, eating, or trying to help children in your backseat, it’s all distracted driving.
- Avoid drifting, especially when making turns, and check your blind spots before changing lanes. A cursory glance in the mirror may not be enough to spot a motorcycle.
This week as you get behind the wheel, remember to look twice – you truly may save a life!
Safety Tips for Motorcycle Riders
While you can’t completely eliminate the risk, there are steps you can take as a licensed motorcycle rider to increase your safety.
- Always wear a helmet. This is the most important tip we can offer. Arkansas law requires only drivers and passengers under 21 to wear protective helmets, but this is the single best way to decrease your chances of fatality. When you choose a color, brighter is better!
- Never drive under the influence of alcohol. Arkansas drinking and driving laws apply to all motorists on the road.
- Wear protective clothing: gloves, boots, and long, thick pants. This coverage will help protect you from severe road burns in minor collisions. Again, bright colors will help increase your visibility!
Finally, recognize that many drivers are not looking for motorcycles on the road. That’s why it’s important to drive with caution and avoid sudden turns and lane changes. Never assume that a car driver has seen you. Take extra care when driving at night, in the rain, or in any other situation where your visibility is decreased. Follow speed limit signs.
Injured? Call Taylor King Law
Unfortunately, not all accidents can be avoided. If you were involved in a motorcycle wreck and believe the other driver was at fault, you may have legal rights to compensation. The personal injury lawyers at Taylor King Law can help.
To begin your FREE, no-obligation consultation, call 1-800-CAR-WRECK (1-800-227-9732) or submit a form through taylorkinglaw.com. We’ll be on your side, by your side.
Photo Cred: Seth Macey