VDOT providing safety tips during Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month

Published: May. 9, 2023 at 9:16 AM EDT
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - The Department of Motor Vehicles says between 2018 and 2022 there were 30 fatal traffic crashes involving a motorcycle between Augusta, Rockingham, Shenandoah and Page counties.

As the summer season approaches, it’s the time of year to remind both motorcyclists and drivers to share the road safely.

“Sometimes motorcycles have just a single headlight or perhaps two headlights that are closer together so some of the visual cues that we use to determine how far away another driver is or how fast they’re approaching they’re a little bit different for motorcycles,” Staunton VDOT communications specialist Kenneth Slack said.

Slack says another tip for drivers is to give more following distance when behind a motorcycle, and for those on a bike, Slack says the most important tip is to be ‘hyper-aware’ whether that be of other motorcyclists, drivers or road conditions.

“Gravel roads can be a potential problem. Freshly milled roads, sometimes in the middle of a paving operation, a contractor will strip off the top layer of asphalt and have sort of those rough lines that are going middle of the road, and that can actually affect the control of a motorcycle driver so you have to keep the speed down in those kinds of conditions,” Slack said.

For those new to riding a motorcycle, there are safety training courses available through the DMV’s Virginia Rider Training Program.

Virginia State Police also offer a free assessment course called ‘Ride 2 Save Lives’. Participants learn how to handle hazards, special situations, interstate highways, and curve negotiation are taught with the assistance of the Virginia State Police motor troopers. You can find information on registration for that program here.