Motorcycle Safety Foundation Marks Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month; Safety Messages Increasingly Vital with More Riders on the RoadIRVINE, Calif.--April 29, 2005--The Motorcycle Safety Foundation, this nation's non-profit safety and training organization, again will mark the start of the spring riding season with May's "Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month," to help focus attention on training programs for motorcyclists, and to ask that other motorists share the road with riders.
Motorcycle safety programs from state to state will coordinate their own public awareness efforts, ranging from billboards to radio spots and media relations campaigns. And the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration lists May as a "special emphasis period" that focuses on traffic safety issues concerning motorcyclists.
"Motorcyclists and other motorists should always think and practice safety, and also share the road," said MSF President Tim Buche. "But we and other organizations and the NHTSA have reserved May as a special time to bring attention to critical issues of highway safety, when two-, four- and more-wheelers start out on the busy spring and summer driving and riding season."
"More Americans from every demographic group are riding motorcycles these days," Buche said. "So, if you're a car driver, please keep in mind that the motorcyclist in front of you or crossing that intersection could be your neighbor, your child's teacher, your doctor, your local representative, anyone. We ask that motorcyclists and all motorists respect each other's right of way. If you're a motorcyclist, get trained and stick to the vital rules of riding safely."
These important rules are:
1) Get proper training and keep going to training classes annually - Become a lifelong learner. 2) Gear up - Wear real motorcycling protective safety apparel and helmet manufactured to the standards set by the Department of Transportation. 3) Ride straight - Never use alcohol or other drugs when riding. 4) Ride within your limits - Don't ride faster/longer than your abilities allow. 5) Get licensed - Ride legally with certification from the DMV.
Rider safety and rider training are becoming ever more important as the number of motorcycles on public roads continues to climb. New motorcycle sales topped one million in 2003 and 2004, and sales have gone up every year for the past 12 years.
In response, the MSF has expanded and improved its training programs, which now include the Experienced RiderCourse(sm), Scooter School 1 for scooterists, and will soon add the Seasoned Cyclist program, designed for senior citizens who ride.
Since 1974, more than three million people have taken an MSF RiderCourse, with 250,000 enrolled last year alone. There are some 1,500 training facilities nationwide that utilize the MSF training curriculum, presented by more than 8,400 MSF-certified rider coaches. The MSF administers the California Motorcycle Safety Program, which is overseen by the California Highway Patrol. Some 40,000 riders are trained each year at more than 80 training sites in the state.
In addition to training and contact information on its comprehensive Web site (www.msf-usa.org), the MSF offers educational materials that provide important safety information, as well as license-free print and broadcast public service announcements.
The Motorcycle Safety Foundation(SM) is a national, not-for-profit organization promoting the safety of motorcyclists with programs in rider training, operator licensing and public information. The MSF is sponsored by the U.S. manufacturers and distributors of BMW, Ducati, Harley-Davidson, Honda, Kawasaki, KTM, Piaggio/Vespa, Suzuki, Victory and Yamaha motorcycles.