Because many residents and visitors in New Mexico like to enjoy a motorcycle ride, there are many initiatives that highlight the importance of driving cautiously around motorcyclist. While these campaigns often asked motorists to check twice for motorcyclists, this does not always prevent motorcycle crashes from occurring. Each year, thousands of motorcyclists suffer serious and fatal injuries following a wreck caused by a negligent motorist.
In May, two motorcyclists were killed in a terrible accident here in New Mexico. More recently, another terrible crash has brought the nation's attention once again to the dangers faced by motorcyclists.
Drivers in New Mexico may be familiar with the so-called two second rule for determining how close one can safely follow another car. The way it works, a car's front end should arrive at the same point where the preceding vehicle's rear bumper was after at least two seconds. Otherwise, the person behind may be too close to safely stop.
A previous post on this blog talked about the benefits of motorcycle helmets. The important takeaway from that post was that while helmets do indeed save lives, they are not a foolproof guarantee that a motorcyclist will not get seriously hurt or even die in an accident. Thus, people in New Mexico should resist the temptation to blame a motorcyclist for his or her injuries if he or she was not wearing a helmet.
Many motorcycle aficionados and others in Bernalillo and other parts of the greater Albuquerque area have probably heard the maxim that helmets save lives. While that is indeed true, it is important to put that advice in to context, lest one think that not wearing a helmet somehow makes a motorcycle crash automatically the fault of the motorcyclist.
As part of its ongoing responsibility to keep the roads of both New Mexico and the rest of the country safe, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has for over a decade been involved in the Share the Road campaign, a public awareness campaign that various states use to draw attention to the dangers motorcyclists face at the hands of other divers.
More so than other drivers, motorcyclists have to be mindful of objects on the road, as even small items like rocks can cause serious motorcycle accidents.
Most people in New Mexico can point to at least one road in their area that is in poor shape. A previous post on this blog talked about how a family sued a branch of government in the State of New Mexico following a fatal accident that, at least initially, was thought to have been caused by potholes in the road.
A previous post on this blog discussed how motorcycle accidents in New Mexico are caused not only by negligent drivers but also by defective motorcycles which fail at a critical time. In either situation, though, the end result is still that the motorcyclists get severely injured or die.