Since it is January and we are entering a new year, we need to start planning on how we are going to continue our decline in Motorcycle crashes and fatalities. With training motorcyclists and all the advertising to watch for Motorcycles, we have made a difference. Now it is time to start re-training with advanced training on your own motorcycle, two up training, three-wheel training and to bring more awareness to distracted driving and drivers just being in a hurry.
I’m writing this the first of December and all the crash reports are not in. I will quote the latest stats. In March I should be able to close out the year with year-end totals. In 2017 we had 3803 crashes and 156 fatalities to this date. In 2018 we have had 3147 crashes and 143 fatalities to this date. I just hope that everyone keeps doing the best they can to insure everyone around them rides SMART, rides SOBER, rides MOTORCYCLE ENDORSED, rides ALERT, rides with the RIGHT GEAR and rides TRAINED.
Something that we have been working on for some time is to change the law that says we can not cover our ears while driving or riding. Many of us wear ear plugs to cut down on wind noise and as per the existing law, we cannot plug both ears. We are working to amend part of the law so we can wear ear plugs, but we are not saying you can obstruct your hearing with speakers for sound or music. The amending law HB 548 has passed the House and is in Committee in the Senate.
Distracted driving continues to be something we need to focus on. We need to keep putting out the word that distracted driving is killing us. Everyone needs to stop using cell phones and electronic devices while driving. Other driving habits also need to be corrected. Tailgating and just being in a hurry continues adding to crashes. As bikers we need to talk to all drivers and riders to be responsible behind the wheel and behind the handlebars.
A couple of things to watch for this year. Many states are looking at bikers that wear face masks or face protection and lane splitting for keeping traffic flow moving. If you have opinions on these subjects and if you would like to make difference, join ABATE of Ohio, Inc. and make your voice heard. Logon to ABATE.com or call 1-800-25-BIKER.
Motorcycle Ohio will be starting 2019 registration on January 22, 2019. If you want to get in an early class, sign up early. If your Christmas present was a bike, please get trained before you get out and have a crash. A lot of insurance companies will give you a discount for taking a class. This year they have overhauled their web site and have made it mobile friendly. If you have any questions, contact MO at Motorcycle.ohio.gov or 1-614-466-4041.
If you would like to learn more about ABATE of Ohio, the State Seminar would be a great start. You do not need to be a member to attend. If you are interested the cost is $30.00 and that includes dinner. The date is Saturday, February 2nd starting at 8:00am at Embassy Suites Dublin. For more info contact ABATE of Ohio at ABATE.com or 614-319-4715.
Now for the big news. Beginning in January, the cost for 2019 membership will be $20.00 and will include a FREE 2019 Raffle Bike Ticket. The Magazine is $10.00 for a printed copy or it’s free on the Web Site, ABATE.com. As in the past, you will be enrolled in a $3,500 Accidental Life and Dismemberment Insurance policy as part of your membership. Let’s get out and sign those friends up. This is how you can keep your FREEDOM to ride your Motorcycle.
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