The month of May is Arizona Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month. During May, the Arizona Motorcycle Safety and Awareness Foundation* takes extra time to promote motorcycle safety and to help reduce the number of crashes, injuries, and deaths.
This Motorcycle Awareness month was originally started by the American Motorcyclist Association* back in the early 1980s to raise awareness. Each state since then has adopted its own version of this movement. Motorcycle safety is everyone’s responsibility on the roads! Motorcycle accidents affect everyone that is involved.
Motorcycle Laws in Arizona
ARS 28-892: Seating is required for all motorcycle riders.
ARS 28-903: Prohibits lane-splitting for motorcyclists, meaning they cannot pass a vehicle without leaving that vehicle’s lane, they must change lanes completely to pass a vehicle. Prohibits motorcyclists from sharing a single lane with 3 or more motorcyclists side by side.
ARS: 28-924: When driving a motorcycle on public roads, a headlight must be present and provide enough light to view the road ahead and alert other drivers of their presence on the road.
ARS 28-955: Limiting the modification that can be done on the motorcycle’s engine and exhaust to make it sound louder.
ARS 28-964: Mandatory safety equipment such as goggles, glasses, or a face shield must be worn while riding. This helps prevent loose debris, insects, or dust from getting into the eyes of the motorcycle rider and causing poor vision. Helmets are mandatory for riders under the age of 18.
ARS: 28-3101: All motorcyclists operating a motorcycle must have a Class M license for the Arizona Motor Vehicle Services.
Tips For Drivers to Avoid Crashing into a Motorcyclist
- Motorcycle Awareness
- Compared to other vehicles on the road, motorcycles are difficult to spot. When you go to change lanes or make a turn, use caution and double-check for motorcycles.
- Turn Signals
- Unlike other vehicles, most motorcycles do not have turn signals that automatically turn off after making a turn. It is never safe to assume that just because a vehicle has a turn signal on means it will be turning or switching lanes.
- As you should already be doing, if you are making a turn or switching lanes you should be using your turn signal to alert other drivers.
- AVOID TAILGATING. Tailgating is dangerous as it is but is even more dangerous when it comes to motorcycles. To keep the motorcycle rider safe, you should keep enough distance between the two of you.
- Motorcycles on the road are more prone to experiencing potholes, wet surfaces, or uneven pavements dramatically than other vehicles. This can cause the riders to suddenly change their driving patterns.
- Blindspot Checking
- Many motorcycle accidents happen due to the negligent driver not seeing the motorcycle and it turns out they were in the driver’s blind spot. Double-checking before any car maneuver can help eliminate this risk.
- Stopping Suddenly
- Quickly stopping in a car is way easier than a motorcycle. It is essential to make sure braking isn’t left to do last minute when on the road.
How Motorcyclists Can Stay Safe on the Road
For the best protection on the road, Arizona motorcycle riders should make sure they hit all the marks on this list:
- Wearing Department of Transportation approved helmets
- Long sleeve clothing to protect against road rash
- Close-toed shoes or boots
- Always riding sober
- Make sure side mirrors are adjusted for optimal viewing
- Use caution when driving in areas with road construction
- Avoid riding during heavy weather
- Always use a turn signal when changing lanes or making a turn
* Source: https://www.amsaf.org/
* Source: https://www.americanmotorcyclist.com/