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Unread 05-01-2014, 02:44 PM   #1
Motorcycle News
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Distracted driving is deadly driving

PICKERINGTON, Ohio -- Theperils of distracted driving take a front seat during May, which is designatedas national Motorcycle Awareness Month.

The initiative, supported by the National Highway Traffic SafetyAdministration, encourages drivers to watch for motorcycles and understand thatmotorcycle riders enjoy the same rights and privileges as operators of othervehicles.

The slogans are everywhere, on billboards and bumper stickers, badges andT-shirts: "Watch out for motorcycles." "Look twice, save alife." "Share the road."

But not all motorists heed the warnings. And, with the warmer temperaturesspilling across most of the country in May, the roads are filling with riders.

Increased vigilance is paramount.

"Too many drivers become cocooned in their own world and fail to notice amotorcyclist in the lane beside them or in oncoming traffic as they are makinga turn," said Rob Dingman, AMA president and CEO. "MotorcycleAwareness Month is an campaign to remind other motorists to look around, checkyour mirrors and intersections, then check again before beginning a lane changeor turn."

Distracted and inattentive driving is increasing the danger for all motorists,but especially for motorcyclists, who are not protected by a car's metalstructure and airbags.

Drivers can avoid crashes with motorcyclists by taking extra care and lookingtwice to spot motorcycles in traffic -- especially at intersections --respecting the motorcyclists' space on the road and by not following tooclosely.

The AMA also strongly encourages motorcyclists to take training, wearappropriate safety gear and practice safe riding techniques.

The AMA has long advocated that local and state governments maintain orincrease funding for motorcycle rider education and motorist awareness programs-- two highly effective strategies to reduce the likelihood of motorcyclecrashes.

Video and audio messages can be downloaded at www.americanmotorcyclist.com/Rights/Resources/PublicServiceAnnouncements.aspx.

AMA position statements on distracted and inattentive vehicle operation andrider education, as well as other subjects, can be found here: www.americanmotorcyclist.com/rights/positionstatements.

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