May is Motorcycle Awareness Month across Arizona and the rest of the country. It's a time for drivers everywhere to remember that as the temperatures rise so do the number of motorcycle riders on the roads. Unfortunately, every year hundreds of riders are hurt or killed in motorcycle accidents. While motorcyclists are often painted as daredevils who dart in and out of traffic, the reality is that many of these accidents are the fault of the other driver.
Motorcycle crashes can happen at any time and on any road, but certain conditions may increase the chances of an accident. Analyzing data from the 2013 Arizona Crash Facts Summary put out by the Arizona Department of Transportation can bring awareness to these trends and help victims better understand what may have been factors in their accidents.
It's quickly becoming motorcycle season again, and as riders prepare their bikes for another summer on the road, accident awareness increases as well. Motorcycle crashes are often very serious because the bikes offer very little protection to their riders against a full-sized vehicle. While wearing a helmet, which Arizona laws do not require for riders over the age of 17, can help protect against brain injury, it does not protect the rest of your body.
Motorcycles can be a great way to get around and are the preferred method of transportation for many in Arizona. However, because of their small size and little protection for riders, motorcycles are also involved in a significant portion of serious motor vehicle crashes.
Motorcycle riding is a popular pastime in Arizona, and most riders understand that there are increased risks in the event of an accident because a motorcycle offers little to no protection. Still, very few people who have not been in such a situation can fully realize the devastation a serious accident resulting in severe injuries can have on a family's emotional and financial well-being. When an accident is caused due to the fault of another party and a person is killed, the aftermath can be even worse.
A July 14 crash between a motorcycle and a vehicle has left one woman injured and another facing drunk driving charges. According to reports, the motorcycle accident took place just before 10 p.m. at the intersection of South Service Road and Albert Street. A 40-year-old woman was reportedly behind the wheel of the vehicle and had a blood-alcohol level higher than the legal limit at the time of crash. It was not clear from initial reports what caused the crash or whether the 40-year-old woman suffered any injuries.
Many people across the country experienced cooler than usual weather in 2013, and lower temperatures may have been a contributing factor to the drop in motorcycle deaths from 2012, according to the Governors Highway Safety Association. The American Motorcyclist Association's vice president of governmental affairs indicated that the decrease was good news, but experts are saying that the lower number of death from motorcycle accidents last year was an anomaly for much of the country, with 2009 being the only other year showing a decrease since 1997.
Police in Casa Grande reported that a motorcyclist was killed on Feb. 22 at around 6:00 p.m. Investigators concluded that a pickup pulled out in front of the motorcycle while both the truck and motorcycle had green lights. Apparently the rider was unable to avoid any collision and he died at the scene of the accident.