A recent sobriety checkpoint in Blount County netted a large number of citations given to motorcycle riders wearing non-compliant helmets.
The checkpoint on U.S. highway 129, resulted in 17 citations. Fifteen officers worked the checkpoint, which saw more than 200 vehicles in about two hours. As authorities work to reduce the risk of Tennessee drunk driving accidents, they found themselves monitoring the start of motorcycle riding season.
Knoxville motorcycle accident attorneys know May is motorcycle safety and awareness month. But that doesn't mean thousands of riders aren't already hit the streets following the unusually mild northern winter. Motorists are reminded to look twice and save a life as the spring and summer riding season gets under
Eight riders at Saturday's checkpoint were given citations for wearing non-compliant helmets, which means they were not approved by the Tennessee Department of Transportation. Helmetcheck.org is a resource riders can use to help ensure they are wearing an approved helmet; the DOT or Snell sticker should also be located on the inside or outside of the helmet.
The truth is that the vast majority of riders are safety conscious, and all too aware of the risks inherent in riding a motorcycle. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports more than 4,000 riders a year are killed and nearly 100,000 are seriously injured in riding accidents.
About 100 riders a year are killed in motorcycle accidents in Tennessee.
And in more than half of all fatal accidents involving another vehicle, the driver of the other vehicle is at fault. Failure to yield and turning left in front of a rider is the most common cause of serious and fatal motorcycle accidents.
The Motorcycle Safety Foundation offers 10 Tips every car and truck driver should know about motorcycles:
-Look for motorcycles, particularly at intersections.
-A motorcycle's size may mean it is closer than it appears. Speed can also be difficult to judge. When pulling into traffic, whether at an intersection or from a private drive, assume the rider is closer than he looks.
-Blind spots can hide motorcycles. So can obstacles like bushes, fences and parked cars. Take a moment to check thoroughly.
-A motorcycle's small size makes it look fast; don't assume a rider is speeding.
-Brake lights don't always activate when a rider is slowing -- bikes can be slowed by rolling out of the throttle and down shifting. Allow plenty of following distance.
-Turn signals on motorcycle's don't shut off on their own. Therefore they can be left on accidentally. Make sure of a rider's intentions before proceeding.
-A motorcycle is entitled to it's own lane of travel, and may move around in that lane to avoid debris, for better visibility or for other reasons. Don't crowd a rider.
-While a motorcycle can be quite maneuverable, don't expect a rider to be able to dodge out of the way.
-Motorcycles can be slow to stop, particularly on wet or slippery pavement.
-Think of a motorcycle in motion as a person.