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Summary of Recommendations: Table of ContentsHomenhtsa

The National Agenda for Motorcycle Safety recommends the following:


URGENT Recommendations

Research in Motorcycle Crashes (page 9)
• Immediate action should be taken by government and industry to address the critical questions in motorcycle safety through comprehensive, in-depth studies as well as studies focused on specific topics.

Motorcyclist Alcohol & Other Impairment (page 25)
• Continue to discourage mixing alcohol and other drugs with motorcycling.

Personal Protective Equipment (page 27)
• Use effective strategies to increase the use of FMVSS 218 compliant helmets.

Motorist Awareness (page 31)
• Educate operators of other vehicles to be more conscious of the presence of motorcyclists.


ESSENTIAL Recommendations

Research in Motorcycle Crashes (page 9)
• To better utilize data collected by law enforcement personnel, a uniform traffic crash report for police officers should be developed and deployed. A similar format should also be developed for emergency medical services reports. This will permit meaningful comparisons among jurisdictions. All concerned parties should share the resulting information.

• Mechanisms for building academic and funding capacity for ongoing and future motorcycle safety research should be explored.

Motorcyclist Attitudes (page 15)
• Study factors that affect and shape motorcyclists’ attitudes and behavior and how they affect crash involvement.

• Using information about how motorcyclists form attitudes about safety issues, create programs that reduce dangerous behavior and reinforce safe behavior.

Rider Education & Training (page 17)
• Expand motorcycle safety programs to accommodate all who need or seek training.

• Conduct uniform follow-up research into the effectiveness and impact of rider education and training.

• Merge rider education and training and licensing functions to form one-stop operations.

Licensing (page 21)
• Commission studies to ensure that licensing tests measure skills and behaviors required for crash avoidance.

• Identify and remove barriers to obtaining a motorcycle endorsement.

• Develop and implement programs to allow all state motorcycle safety programs to issue motorcycle endorsements immediately upon successful completion of rider training courses.

• Enforce penalties for operating a motorcycle without a proper endorsement.

• Encourage states and jurisdictions to provide motorcycle specific training to license examiners administering testing for motorcyclists.

Crash Avoidance Skills (page 23)
• Conduct research to determine which rider crash avoidance skills are most important.

• Develop countermeasures in training, license testing, and motorcycle technology to address any current crash avoidance deficiencies.

• Evaluate effectiveness of rider education and training in developing crash avoidance skills.

Motorcyclist Alcohol & Other Impairment (page 25)
• Study how alcohol, drugs and other substances, including over-the-counter medications, can affect a motorcyclist’s operating skills.

• Study the alcohol, drug and other substance use patterns of motorcyclists.

• Educate law enforcement about unique alcohol-related behavior of motorcyclists.

• Encourage partnerships with groups already involved in alcohol/substance abuse issues related to motor vehicle crashes, e.g., Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD).

Personal Protective Equipment (page 27)
• Educate motorcyclists about the value of protective apparel by providing an information source on related research and a forum for the exchange of information.

• Find ways to more effectively communicate the benefits of helmet use and work toward making voluntary use of FMVSS 218 compliant helmets more widely accepted.

• Use effective strategies to ensure that all helmets in use meet FMVSS 218.

• Revise FMVSS 218.

Motorist Awareness (page 31)
• Remind motorcyclists that they may be overlooked and provide defensive strategies for overcoming this situation.

• Include questions regarding motorcyclists on driver’s license tests and include information in driving manuals.

• Include the completion of a motorcyclist awareness class in sanctions against motorists found guilty of violating a motorcyclist’s right-of-way.

• Adequate funding needs to be devoted to the development and implementation of motorist awareness issues.

Insurance Industry Involvement (page 33)
• Insurers should write policies that stipulate that coverage or certain portions of coverage are not valid if the owner permits an unlicensed or improperly licensed operator to use the motorcycle.

Enforcement & Adjudication (page 35)
• Educate law enforcement and judicial officials about unique motorcycle safety issues and resources.

• Encourage inclusion of law enforcement officials in Motorcycle Safety Program Assessments.

• Develop and implement standardized data gathering and reporting for motorcycle crashes.

• Include motorcycle crash investigation procedures in the basic course given to crash investigators.

• Appropriate sanctions should be applied to those found guilty of contributing to motorcycle crashes. The sanctions, such as mandatory attendance at a motorcycle awareness course, would be designed to expand knowledge of motorcycle issues.

Traffic Safety Community Attitude (page 37)
• Traffic safety organizations outside of the motorcycling community can better influence motorcycle safety issues by becoming more educated about motorcycle safety issues and adopt them where applicable.

• Increase funding for motorcycle safety programs by elevating their importance to state highway safety offices.

• Representatives of the motorcycle safety community should be integrated into the larger highway safety community to improve cooperative efforts.

Motorcycle Design (page 43)
• Conduct research to determine how current motorcycle designs affect crash and injury causation.

• Implement the use of available tire and wheel technology and explore technology, such as run-flat tires, to reduce frequency of loss-of-control crashes caused by puncture flats.

Braking (page 45)
• Study the effectiveness of linked and antilock braking in the field. If these technologies prove valuable, deploy them more widely.

Conspicuity (page 49)
• Conduct research to determine why other motorists fail to see and identify motorcyclists and implement countermeasures.

• Encourage motorcyclists to enhance their conspicuity.

• Encourage manufacturers to make motorcycle apparel and parts conspicuous.

• Reconsider state requirements that prohibit safe conspicuity-enhancing modifications, including safe modification to lighting systems.

Lane Use (page 51)
• Study the safety implications of lane splitting.

Roadway Characteristics (page 53)
• Identify and prioritize roadway hazards to motorcycle operation.

• Develop and revise highway standards on all levels—federal, state, county, and local—to reflect the needs of motorcyclists and encourage motorcycle-friendly design, construction, and maintenance procedures.

• Create a working group to recommend changes to highway standards to increase motorcycle safety.

• Post specific warnings for motorcyclists where unavoidable hazards exist.

• Revise the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) so that signage better communicates roadway or construction conditions that present hazards to motorcyclists.

• Educate motorcyclists about the hazards created by common roadway defects and maintenance methods. Emphasize riding skills required to negotiate these hazards through education and training.

• Take steps to remove slippery sealants and repair substances applied to road surfaces.

• Educate road design and maintenance personnel about conditions that pose hazards to motorcyclists.

Other Vehicle Design (page 55)
• Educate motorcyclists about strategies to overcome the challenges that the designs of other vehicles create in the traffic environment.

First Response (page 57)
• Integrate a motorcyclist treatment component in emergency medical personnel training.

• Integrate a motorcyclist treatment component in first-aid/bystander care training and encourage motorcyclists to obtain this training.

Intelligent Transportation Systems (page 59)
• Include motorcycles in the design and deployment of Intelligent Transportation Systems.


NECESSARY Recommendations

Conveying Research Information to Users (page 13)
• Create a clearinghouse to distribute current, practical information about motorcycle safety based on recent research.

• Develop research-based safety information that can be used easily by the consumer media and in rider education and training systems.

• Explore public service announcements, advertising in enthusiast and near-enthusiast media, and any other viable avenues for distributing safety information.

Rider Education & Training (page 17)
• Increase the number of states conducting Motorcycle Safety Program Assessments.

• Establish benchmarks for rider education and training effectiveness and program operation excellence.

• Explore the effectiveness of on-street training.

Licensing (page 21)
• Develop an enhanced motorcycle licensing model using appropriate GDL concepts and evaluate its effectiveness.

Crash Avoidance Skills (page 23)
• Evaluate the need for motorcycle simulator skills training.

• Examine technological approaches such as pre-crash warning and avoidance systems to enhance crash prevention.

Personal Protective Equipment (page 27)
• Conduct research regarding protective apparel effectiveness, and consider development or adoption of existing standards, if research justifies.

Insurance Industry Involvement (page 33)
• Collect, organize, analyze, and distribute motorcycle-specific loss data from insurers to better understand safety issues, and to educate riders and other motorists on motorcycling safety issues.

• Develop guidelines for insurers to tie approved training, licensing, and safe-riding practices to premium reductions.

Braking (page 45)
• Use information from research to implement other braking-related countermeasures.

• Provide additional training and education on proper braking and panic-braking techniques.

Vehicle Modifications (page 47)
• Study the role of modifications in current motorcycle crashes.

• Educate users about how modifications and loads can change the operating characteristics of their motorcycles.

Conspicuity (page 49)
• Conduct research on the effect of automobile DRL on motorcycle safety.

Lane Use (page 51)
• Educate motorcyclists about lane-use strategies, including HOV lane usage.

Roadway Characteristics (page 53)
• Reduce roadway debris such as that resulting from uncovered loads and shorn retreads.

Other Vehicle Design (page 55)
• Emphasize motorcycle safety issues as a consideration in the design of other vehicles.

• Investigate how the designs of other vehicles affect motorcycle safety.

First Response (page 57)
• Identify opportunities to utilize the EMS Agenda for the Future to promote motorcycle safety.

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