Motorcycle Awareness Education on the Rise?

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Motorcycle Awareness Education on the Rise?

On Oct. 14, 2014, the State of Michigan approved the Nathan Bower Act, which requires that driver education courses in Michigan include instruction on bicycle and motorcycle awareness and safety.

Motorcycle SafetyThe law was proposed in memory of Bower, who died on May 6, 2009, at age 19 after he was struck by a vehicle while riding his motorcycle in Brown City only a few miles from his Peck, Mich., home. The bill was signed on what would have been Bower’s 25th birthday.

Now, the State of Illinois is recognizing the need for motorcycle and bicycle awareness training in their driver’s education courses. Republican Rep. Tom Bennett of Gibson City, Ill., recently proposed a bill that would require that all behind the wheel instruction includes lessons on motorcycle safety and awareness “to ensure students understand their surroundings when operating a motor vehicle.”

According to the Illinois State Department of Transportation, motorcycle fatalities made up 15% of all vehicle fatalities in 2013 in the state.

While there are a wide range of contributing factors to motor vehicle accidents, including distracted driving, reckless driving and impaired driving to name a few, the first step is increasing awareness.

Awareness that motorcyclists have a place on the road. Awareness that motorcyclists have families and jobs and lives. Awareness that motorcyclists’ lives matter. And it’s up to every one of us to take a stand and promote the motto: “Look twice, save a life.” If you don’t, who will?

By |2015-04-15T14:47:32+00:00February 21st, 2015|Categories: Editorial/Commentary Articles, News/Events Articles|3 Comments

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  1. Mark February 21, 2015 at 9:05 pm

    You can not get enough safety education, and I feel it is far more important for rider safety awareness than expecting some dead head in a cage, playing with his iPod, to watch out for motorcycle riders. Riders need to keep 360 degree awareness around them at all times. Like Truckers, riders need to watch their distances and know where their escape routes are just to name a few. I may not score any points here but in my 40 years of riding I’ve had my share of accidents, and most of them – I was screwing around… Now don’t get me wrong! I mean no disrespect to anyone who has lost a loved one in a motorcycle accident. I am not saying that everyone who was ever in a motorcycle accident was at fault. Would riders have fared better had they been riding more defensibly? I’m not hatching the egg here, defensive riding is stuff that is taught in motorcycle riding courses. All I’m saying is that we shouldn’t be putting motorcycle awareness and safety solely on the shoulders of the cage jockeys…

  2. George February 21, 2015 at 11:58 am

    This needs to be mandatory in all states! In 1990 or 1991, I was hit in the rear left swing-arm by a little old lady in a Cadillac in oncoming traffic make a left turn into a grocery store totaling my bike and leaving me with road rash on both my left arm and leg as well as breaking my left knee, foot, and 3 toes. Shit hit the throttle so hard that the front end of the Caddy lifted up leaving me with no real time to take evasive action. It’s not like the options were favorable. Dump the bike and take out a bus stop full of people which in now way would I ever do, or take the hit. Obviously, she said she didn’t see me and the real comment from her that blew my minds was not “Are you alright?” or “Are you hurt?” Nope. It was “you scratched my car.”!!!
    I firmly believe this type of education as well as educating all motorists on safe travel distance when sharing the road with 18 Wheelers as well.
    Make it happen!

    • Nathan Bower Act April 19, 2015 at 10:05 pm

      Thank you for mentioning the Nathan Bower Act in your blog about Illinois recently proposed bill that would require that all behind the wheel instruction includes lessons on motorcycle safety and awareness “to ensure students understand their surroundings when operating a motor vehicle.” It our goal that every state will get a Nathan Bower Act. We are here to help. We have been contacted by some states. In honor of Nathans life being taken on May 6, Motorcycle Awareness Month and Bike Month we will attending a few events in the country and Washington DC.

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