How to stay safe on a motorcycle in Connecticut

This article looks at figures related to motorcycle accidents in Connecticut and how riders can stay safe.

It is never too early to think about safety when it comes to motorcycle safety, especially given the fact that motorcycle fatalities are rising nationwide. As the Connecticut Post reports, while fatal motorcycle accidents declined in Connecticut in 2015, they actually went up by 10 percent across the nation. Furthermore, motorcyclists are overrepresented in overall traffic fatalities, especially in Connecticut. When the next riding season comes around, it's important for bikers everywhere to know what they can do to stay safe.

The facts on motorcycle accidents

In 2015, over 5,000 people died while riding motorcycles in the United States. That figure represents an increase of approximately 450 deaths when compared to 2014. In Connecticut, motorcycle fatalities actually dropped, from 54 in 2014 to 45 in 2015. While that drop is certainly encouraging, riding a motorcycle in Connecticut can still be dangerous. In fact, motorcycle fatalities account for 22 percent of all traffic fatalities in the state, well above the national average of 14 percent.

One of the reasons the fatality rate in Connecticut is so high is because of the state's helmut laws. As the Governors Highway Safety Association points out, helmets are estimated to have saved the lives of 1,630 people in 2013 alone. A further 715 lives nationwide could have been saved that year if all motorcyclists had worn a helmut. Connecticut, however, doesn't require motorcyclists who are over 18 to wear a helmut.

Staying safe while riding

Aside from wearing a helmut, there are other steps riders can take to increase their safety while on the road. It's important to keep in mind that motorcycles are harder for other drivers to see, which is why bikers should wear reflective clothing and ensure that their lights are working properly. Passengers should wear protective and reflective gear as well.

Motorcyclists should also keep in mind that even if they are good drivers, that doesn't mean everybody else on the road is. Distracted driving is a major problem and motorcyclists should ensure they maintain a safe distance from other vehicles to avoid getting struck by a driver who isn't paying attention to his or her surroundings. Driving safe means maintaining plenty of space between one's motorcycle and other vehicles and avoiding getting caught in another vehicle's blind spot.

Personal injury law

A motorcycle accident can lead to very serious injuries, especially given that riders have much less protecting them than most other drivers do. For those who have been hurt in a motorcycle accident it is important to reach out to a personal injury attorney today, especially if the accident was caused by another driver's negligence or reckless behavior. An experienced attorney can show clients what legal options they have, including the possibility of pursuing financial claims to help deal with the fallout of the accident.