Nearly 20% of All Colorado Accident Fatalities in 2010 Were Motorcyclists
Overall, motorcycle fatalities across the country are down from their 2008 high. However, it should be noted that they spiked by a large percentage at the end of last year. Combine that with higher prices at the pump, and the return of springtime riding weather, and it’s no surprise that more motorcycles are hitting the highway.
Robert Allen, a writer for The Coloradoan, notes a marked increase in the number of bikes on the road:
Meanwhile motorcycle registrations increased by 2.5 percent between 2009 and 2010, according to [Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT)].
‘It’s more than a hobby. It’s getting to a point where a lot of people use it for their primary mode of transportation,’ said Don Enninga, regional coordinator for biker organization Abate of Colorado, adding that fuel costs have many people turning away from cars.
But with an increasing number of motorcyclists on the road comes an unfortunate statistic. As The Canon City Daily Record recently shared, almost 20% of all accident fatalities for 2010 were motorcyclists. Of those, one-third of them did not have the legally required motorcycle endorsement on their license.
In mid-April, Fort Carson took major steps towards improving on that, at least among the military. In the middle of last month, they hosted a sizeable motorcycle safety event for the troops. Zack Thaxton, a writer for News First 5, tells us a bit about the event:
The event featured maintenance training, safety inspections, dealer displays, parts vendors, and demonstrations by the motorcycle units for Colorado Springs Police and the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office. ‘Safety begins even before you hop on a bike,” said El Paso County Sheriff’s Deputy Tony Scherv. “Make sure you’re wearing a helmet, make sure you’re wearing glasses.’
The part I found most interesting was the “drunk goggles.” Participants were fitted with goggles that distorted their vision to the same extent as being intoxicated. They were then subjected to sobriety tests and had to navigate an obstacle course in a golf cart. According to Thaxton, this one had quite an effect on participants.