May is motorcycle awareness month, and the Wisconsin Department of Transportation has some sobering facts for us. In 2020 there was a 40% increase in motorcycle fatalities in the state of Wisconsin. Those statistics are based on the previous 5 year average.

The preliminary data shows that there was 2,095 motorcycle crashes. 1,788 motorcyclists were injured, and 112 died on a motorcycle. That's too many accidents, and those accidents have been increasing over the years. According to the National Safety Council, motorcycle fatalities in the United States have doubled since 1997. 

Motorcycle safety is a two way street. Motorists in cars need to look twice when pulling out from a stop sign, turning left, or changing lanes. Motorcyclists need to practice safe riding, wear protective equipment, scan ahead for hazards, and don't drive under the influence.

Did you know that 50% of motorcycle accidents involve alcohol? There's a list of the most common motorcycle accidents and how to avoid them by rideapart.com. It's a good read especially if you ride a motorcycle so you can practice your skills and look out for these hazards. 

Personally when I ride my motorcycle I act as if I'm invisible. The key is to know the difference between invisible and invincible. Riding like your invisible is basically believing that NONE of the vehicles on the road can see you. Always be ready to make evasive action and find an escape rout.

I've seen some scary stuff on a bike. All of them are featured in rideapart's article. I've had close calls with deer running out and almost locking up my brakes. I've had vehicles pull out in front of me, but I expected them to because I noticed their behavior. I've almost been rear ended by a car. So now whenever I'm at a stop light or slowing down every time I check my mirrors to see if the driver behind me is paying attention.

Motorcycle riding is a lot of fun, but it can be dangerous. Do your best to eliminate as many dangerous aspects of riding you can. And motorists, look twice to save a life.

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