As bikers from across the country travel through North Dakota to attend the 80th annual Sturgis Rally in South Dakota August 7-16, the North Dakota Department of Transportation urges all drivers to be alert for motorcyclists before and after the rally.
“Live to Ride. Ride to Live. Safe 2 Sturgis” banners will be placed at rest areas across North Dakota as a reminder to all motorists to take personal responsibility when traveling by sharing the road.
In North Dakota in 2019, 93% of all reported motorcycle crashes resulted in injury or death. Of the 11 fatalities, 64% were not wearing helmets. Speed and careless/reckless driving were the most frequent contributing factors in all fatal motorcycle crashes.
Following riding best practices, like wearing All The Gear, All The Time, and cooperation from all road users will help achieve the goal of Vision Zero: reduce the number of fatalities and serious injuries on North Dakota roads to zero.
Tips for motorists to prevent a crash with a motorcyclist:
- Look twice for motorcycles. Check all mirrors and blind spots when entering an intersection, changing lanes, passing or turning left.
- Stay back. Motorcycles can stop more quickly than a vehicle.
- Do not try to share the lane. Motorcycles are entitled to a full lane of traffic.
Motorcyclists can increase their safety on the roads by:
- Wearing a DOT-compliant helmet and All The Gear, All The Time. Compliant helmets are labeled with the DOT logo.
- Wearing brightly colored clothes and reflective tape to increase visablity.
- Obeying all traffic laws, including following posted speed limits.
- Being properly licensed.
- Using hand and turn signals at every lane change or turn.
- Riding distraction-free.
- Always riding sober.