Southlake proclaims May Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month

Posted Monday, Apr. 29, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
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Safety Tips from the Texas Department of Transportation For motorcyclists: Wear protective gear, including a helmet. Use headlights and ride defensively. Avoid riding in the center of the lane where debris and oil build up. Learn safe riding techniques by taking a course. Ride at safe speeds and don’t drink and ride. For non-cyclists: Look twice for motorcyclists at intersections, entering highways and whenever turning or changing lanes. Maintain a safe following distance. When passing, move to the other lane and a give the motorcyclist a full lane.

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Southlake is asking drivers to take extra care sharing the road with motorcyclists this month.

At the April 16 city council meeting, Mayor John Terrell proclaimed May Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month.

“I hereby proclaim the month of May 2013 Motorcycle Safety and Awareness Month, and urge all in the community to do their part to increase safety and awareness,” he told those in attendance.

Members of the Patriots Motorcycle Club of Fort Worth were present to accept a plaque and share their mission, to have all of North Texas dedicate May to their cause.

“All of us ride through these streets,” said Geoff Wills, club member. “We’re unprotected on our bikes.”

The group is working with other Texas clubs to honor Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month across the state. Jim Walker, Patriots Motorcycle Club secretary, said 12 cities in the region have already recognized the efforts including Keller, Colleyville and HEB.

He said drivers don’t need advanced classes to keep motorcyclists safe on the roads.

“It’s more common sense than education,” Walker said.

In June 2012, The Texas Department of Transportation reported there were 479 motorcycle fatalities and 5,970 serious injuries in 2011.

Councilman Al Zito said he continues to advocate against distracted driving and shared his story of when a driver ran a red light and collided into him in 1983.

“When you’re riding a motorcycle, it’s one of the most enjoyable things that you can do on the road,” he said. “But you are unprotected and the awareness of other people is extremely important.”

Wills left those in attendance with a chilly message about distracted driving.

“Distracted drivers — people who are messing with their phones, even talking to the kids in the back seat, they’re playing with the radio dials —they kill us,” he said. “It’s as simple as that.”

Dustin L. Dangli, 817-390-7770 Twitter: @dussssstin

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