Motorcycle awareness decreases injury, saves lives
By Lt. Col. Bryan Cessna, Academy Director of Safety
/ Published May 19, 2009
U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. --
With winter in the rear/side view mirror and summer fast approaching, May is typically the month motorcyclists start "getting their motors running."
The warmer weather brings motorcyclists out in full force. Motorcycles of all shapes and types -- sport bikes, street bikes, cruisers, and even mopeds will be on the streets and Academy personnel are no exception.
We have an active riding population here.
Research shows that per vehicle mile traveled, motorcyclists are nearly 37 times more likely than a passenger car occupant to die in a traffic crash. Motorcycle fatalities across the U.S. have steadily increased over the past decade. In the Air Force alone, 11 of 28 PMV fatalities (FY09) of have involved motorcycles. Last year, the U.S. Marine Corps lost more Marines to motorcycle accidents (25) than in combat in the AOR. An alarming truth!
In an effort to promote safe motorcycling and reduce motorcycle mishaps, the Air Force and the Academy are joining with other federal, state and local highway safety, law enforcement and motorcycle organizations proclaiming May as "Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month."
Throughout this month, USAFA Safety will focus on motorcycles and increasing everyone's awareness. I highly encourage all commanders, supervisors and any of our motorcyclists to do the same.
The Academy safety staff will provide information each week, such videos delivered via e-mail, regarding safe motorcycle operations i.e. visibility, proper protective equipment, techniques, etc. The video is slightly dated, but the information is still very pertinent.
Even if you don't own/operate a motorcycle an increased awareness about them will help you avoid potential conflict on our streets and highways.
As always -- be safe.