Paul Januszewski, Fire Chief
North Haven, CT 06473
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, May 25, 2016
Contact: John Guilfoil
Email: [email protected]
North Haven Fire Department Reminds Drivers to Share the Road with Motorcyclists
NORTH HAVEN – With the warm weather upon us, Chief Paul Januszewski and the North Haven Fire Department ask that drivers be cognizant of motorcyclists and remember to always share the road.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that in 2013, there were 4,668 motorcyclists killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes, with an estimated 88,000 who were injured.
“These accidents and fatalities can be avoided,” Chief Januszewski said. “Drivers and motorcyclists should always be aware of their surroundings and respect the rules of the road.”
To prevent accidents and fatalities, Chief Januszewski recommends that drivers and motorcyclists follow several safety tips outlined by the Motorcycle Safety Foundation.
Advice to drivers
- Because of its narrow profile, a motorcycle can be easily hidden in a car’s blind spots. Take an extra moment to look for motorcycles, whether you’re changing lanes or turning at intersections.
- A motorcycle may look farther away than it is and it may be difficult to judge its speed. When checking traffic to turn at an intersection or into/out of a driveway, act as though a motorcycle is closer than it looks.
- Motorcyclists often slow down by downshifting or merely rolling off the throttle, thus not activating the brake light, so allow more following distance.
- Riders often adjust their position within a lane to be seen more easily and to minimize the effects of road debris, passing vehicles and wind. Understand that motorcyclists do this for a reason, not to be reckless or to show off.
- Turn signals on a motorcycle usually are not self-canceling, so some riders forget to turn them off after a turn or lane change. Make sure a motorcycle’s signal is for real.
- Maneuverability is one of a motorcycle’s better characteristics, especially at slower speeds and with good road conditions, but don’t expect a motorcyclist to always be able to dodge out of the way.
Advice to riders
- Remember that motorists often have trouble seeing motorcycles and reacting in time.
- Make sure your headlight works and is on day and night.
- Use reflective strips or decals on your clothing and on your motorcycle.
- Be aware of vehicles’ blind spots.
- Flash your brake light when you are slowing down and before stopping.
- If a motorist doesn’t see you, don’t be afraid to use your horn.
Dress for safety:
- Wear a quality helmet, eye protection and bright and protective clothing.
- Choose long sleeves and pants, over-the-ankle boots and gloves.
Apply effective strategies:
- Constantly search the road for changing conditions.
- Give yourself space and time to respond to other motorists’ actions.
- Give other motorists time and space to respond to you.
- Use lane positioning to be seen — ride in the part of a lane where you are most visible.
- Watch for turning vehicles and signal your next move in advance.
- Avoid weaving between lanes.
- Don’t ride when you are tired or under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.
- Know and follow the rules of the road, and stick to the speed limit.