The month of May would be designated Motorcycle Awareness Month if House Bill 105 becomes law.
From the sandy Highway 12 on the Outer Banks to the curves of the Blue Ridge Parkway, North Carolinian natives and tourists alike enjoy riding our roads for recreation. Some motorists even use motorcycles or mopeds as their primary method of transportation. According to the bill, there are over 132,000 registered motorcycles within North Carolina's borders and over 260,000 people licensed to drive motorcycles. We need to treat these motorists with the same safety and respect we would anyone else on the road.
Motorcycle Awareness Month would promote the safe operation of motorcycles and proper education and training among their users. Rider training, good judgment and an up-to-date knowledge of traffic laws and licensing requirements are each essential, effective ways to ensure motorcyclists remain out of harm's way.
The month would also be a time when efforts focus on bringing attention of car, van, bus and truck drivers on the state's roads to the presence and prevalence of motorcycles. Motorists should know about the existence of a safety promotion, "Look Twice, Save a Life, Motorcycles Are Everywhere." During the month of May, the efforts of organizations including the Concerned Bikers Association/ABATE of North Carolina and the North Carolina Motorcycle Safety Education Program will be bolstered by statewide support.
In recent months, I have written about several tragic accidents involving motorcyclists. A teenage driver accidentally killed motorcyclist Michael Carroll Lewis at an intersection near his home in Sophia last August. On February 20, 2011, Randy Gene Ector, Jr. was airlifted to UNC Hospital in Chapel Hill after his motorcycle was hit by a driver who failed to yield the right of way in Burlington. Most recently, a 22-year-old student at NC State, Jorge Francisco Arango of Greensboro, was killed when an SUV moved into his lane of travel suddenly and unexpectedly. Many of these fatal motorcycle wrecks would be avoided if drivers would slow down, back up and Look Twice, Save a Life!
To write your representatives in support of House Bill 105, visit the official website of the North Carolina General Assembly.