Corbett Declares May as Motorcycle Safety Month

PennDOT Reminds Everyone to Share the Road, Practice Safe Techniques

HARRISBURG – With the promise of warmer weather and increased motorcycle presence on Pennsylvania roadways, Gov. Tom Corbett has signed a proclamation designating May as Motorcycle Safety Awareness month.

PennDOT Secretary Barry J. Schoch says motorcycle safety is the responsibility of both riders and drivers.

“By riding within the limits of their ability and by wearing the proper safety gear, motorcyclists can do a lot to protect themselves,” Schoch said. “But motor vehicle drivers also have a responsibility to keep an eye out for motorcycles and do what they can to share the road and keep riders safe.”

Although motorcycle use is on the rise – the number of registered motorcycles climbed by more than 5,600 and licensed motorcyclists grew by 8,500 last year – crashes and fatalities were down from 2010.  There were more than 3,600 crashes involving motorcycles on Pennsylvania roadways in 2011, resulting in 199 fatalities versus more than 4,000 crashes and 223 fatalities in 2010.

As part of its continuing and aggressive effort to reduce motorcycle crashes and fatalities, PennDOT created the Live Free Ride Alive website.  The interactive website, designed specifically for riders, challenges motorcyclists to take personal responsibility for their own safety.  With a focus on receiving proper training to operate a motorcycle, the site offers visitors a chance to share personal riding stories with one another and take the “Be One Less” pledge to avoid becoming a crash statistic. The site also features a collection of stories about Pennsylvania riders and their families and friends, that celebrate the freedom of riding and take a sobering look at what happens when a rider is hurt in a crash.

Currently, more than 1,700 people have taken the “Be One Less” pledge and more than 850 people have posted a rider message. To learn more about riding safely, to see videos and to share your riding experiences visit www.LiveFreeRideAlive.com.

Additional safety tips for motorists are available by selecting the Motorcycle Safety link under the Traffic Safety Information Center at www.justdrivepa.org.

Taking an approved motorcycle safety training course decreases the chances of a rider being killed or injured in a crash. New and seasoned riders can take advantage of free Basic, Basic Rider 2, Advanced Rider and Three-Wheeled Basic Rider motorcycle safety courses through the Pennsylvania Motorcycle Safety Program.  For more information or to register for a course, please visit www.pamsp.com.

Follow PennDOT on Twitter at www.twitter.com/PennDOTNews.

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