May is Motorcycle Safety and Awareness Month

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MONROE, La. (KNOE) Governor John Bel Edwards has declared the month of May as “Motorcycle Safety and Awareness Month.” In the ongoing effort to increase motorcycle rider safety across the state, the Department of Public Safety’s “Motorcycle Safety, Awareness, and Operator Training Program” currently offers Basic, Intermediate, Advanced, and Instructor training courses and promotes motorcycle awareness projects.

Kaitlin Riley, of Warhawk Harley Davidson, is one of the motorcycle safety instructors for La. State Police. (Source: KNOE)

These research-based courses address the critical physical and mental skills needed in the safe and skillful operation of a motorcycle.

In the Monroe-West Monroe area, Kaitlin Riley of Warhawk Harley Davidson is a safety instructor. Riley has won numerous skills competitions across the country on the back of her Harley.

According to data from the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission, last year 86 people were killed and nearly 1,200 were injured as a result of motorcycle crashes in Louisiana. Although the numbers may seem high, 2018 saw a decrease in fatalities and injuries from the previous year. Unfortunately, so far in 2019 over 20 people have been killed and nearly 300 injured in motorcycle-related crashes per LHSC statistics.

In an effort to help reduce those statistics, riders are encouraged to participate in the “Motorcycle Safety, Awareness, and Operator Training Program” where they can be educated on safe riding practices including: being visible, dressing for safety, applying effective riding strategies, and understanding the capabilities and limitations of their bike. During the program’s hands-on training exercises, motorcyclists are taught to apply these safety practices to not only avoid being involved in a crash but to greatly reduce the chance of injury should a crash occur.

Additional information on the Basic, Intermediate, and Advanced Rider courses, as well as training dates and locations, can be found at < ahref=http://www.lsp.org/motorcycle.html>http://www.lsp.org/motorcycle.html or by dialing 225-925-6113 ext. 224. Throughout the remainder of 2019, the programs will be offered at eight training locations across the state.

You can also join the Motorcycle Awareness Campaign and get "Watch for Motorcycle" signs for your yard and bumper stickers. You can call 225-612-5210 or log onto www.macorg.com.