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Delaware State Police

Superintendent Colonel Melissa Zebley


MOTORCYCLISTS and MOTORISTS- Be Alert for Each Other


Date Posted: Friday, May 28th, 2021

Motorcycle Look

With warmer weather and Memorial Day weekend upon us, the Delaware State Police would like to remind motorcyclists, motorcycle passengers, and individuals interested in purchasing motorcycles to use caution when traveling on Delaware roadways. In 2020 the Delaware State Police investigated 237 motorcycle crashes with 13 being fatal crashes. In 2021, we have already investigated 85 total motorcycle crashes with 8 of them being fatal, including one from yesterday. To decrease the number of crashes involving motorcycles, the Delaware State Police would like to share the following important information to help keep motorcyclists and drivers safe.

When considering purchasing a motorcycle, it is crucial to receive the proper training and required motorcycle endorsement on your driver’s license. There are multiple ways to obtain these. For example, the Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) offers a written examination and road skills test. There are also motorcycle rider education programs at all DMV locations and participating local motorcycle dealerships. It is essential the necessary training be obtained by motorcycle riders to help keep themselves safe on the roadways and learn how to be more visible to the non-motorcycle riding community, which significantly increases their safety.

Dangerous driving behaviors such as speeding, driving erratically and motorcycle drivers driving beyond their capabilities are dangerous and can be contributing factors to crashes. In addition, driving under the influence of alcoholic beverages, illicit drugs or prescription medication can negatively impact a driver’s ability to think, reaction time and balance.

It is important to remember, by taking precautionary measures, motorcyclists can help prevent crashes and injuries by:

  • Reducing speeds and/or maintaining safer speeds.
  • Keeping headlights and marker and taillights on during dark hours and inclement weather.
  • Staying three to four seconds behind a vehicle they intend to pass, checking oncoming traffic from the left side of the lane, signaling the intention to turn, and then checking for oncoming traffic before passing.
  • Checking their rearview mirror and quickly turn their head to ensure the vehicle is a safe distance behind them when completing a pass.
  • Wearing helmets that meet a high protection standard.
  • Wearing proper clothing, eyewear, and sturdy, closed-toe footwear.

Safer motorcycle rides start with respect. Check out the Office of Highway Safety’s Motorcycle Safety website at www.ArriveAliveDE.com/Respect-the-Ride and find out where you can take the Motorcycle Rider Safety Course, popular routes for riders throughout the state of Delaware, and check the street smarts section that teaches you how to conduct a pre-ride check-called T-CLOCS. While you’re visiting, check out the video section featuring some of Delaware’s riders as they talk about why motorcycle safety is so important.

Motorists can help to make the roads safer by taking some simple precautions:

  • Be extra cautious on weekends and good weather days, when more motorcyclists take to the road.
  • Provide adequate room for maneuvering by following at least three to four seconds behind them.
  • Allow extra maneuvering room in areas with potholes, pavement transitions, and railroad crossings.
  • Never try sharing a lane with a motorcycle.
  • If a motorcycle is nearby, check your mirrors carefully before changing lanes. Motorcycles may be in your blind spots or difficult to see because of their smaller size.

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Presented by Public Information Officer, Master Corporal Gary Fournier

Released: 052821 1330

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