HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah — Motorcyclists from all over the Top of Utah are converging on Hill AFB June 14 for the 9th Annual “See Me, Save Me” Campaign Awareness Ride.
“The purpose of the ride is to motivate motorists to take a second look, specifically for motorcyclists and smaller traffic, and to share the road with the smaller traffic including bicyclists and pedestrians,” said Allan Woods, Hill AFB’s Motorcycle Safety Program manager. “In the past the ride has been very popular and we welcome all riders to join our campaign. There is great strength in numbers.”
Riders will stage at the Hill AFB Motorcycle Safety Training Range at 10:30 a.m., head out the Roy Gate at approximately 11 a.m., ride a circular route through local communities and finish at the Hill Aerospace Museum.
All off-base riders who would like to join the campaign ride may stage at the Hill Aerospace Museum at 10:45 a.m. and follow the group as it leaves the Roy Gate.
Local law enforcement and Utah Highway Patrol will escort the group to ensure riders do not have to stop for lights during the ride. They will close intersections as the ride progresses to ensure a safe ride.
According to the Utah Department of Public Safety, fatalities among motorcyclists have increased over the past years, while fatalities among motorists have decreased.
Vehicles are made with more and more safety features, but on a motorcycle, all you have are your riding skills, your personal protective gear and your mental strategies to protect you. You can only control what you are doing out on the road, Woods said.
In Utah, older motorcyclists are more often involved in fatal accidents.Those riders age 50-54 are more likely to be involved in the fatal accidents, though it is riders in the 20-30 year old group who have the highest number of accidents and are the second highest risk for fatalities.
So far this year, Utah has had 14 fatalities compared to five in 2017.
Tips for driving with motorcyclists:
• Check your blind spots. Really check! If a vehicle can disappear in your blind spot, a motorcycle can really disappear.
• Don’t tailgate motorcycles. They can stop faster than a car.
• Use extra caution at intersections. Many motorcycles are hit by vehicles when they’re turning, both left and right. Look, look, and look again.
• Focus on the road. Distractions can be deadly for you and other roadway users.
Woods encourages any motorcyclist to take regular refresher courses on motorcycle safety and riding.
“Knowledge is power and practice will save your life. We are never too old to become lifelong learners,” he said.
Motorcycle Safety Foundation training is normally offered several times a month by local vendors throughout the region. Hill AFB also offers MSF courses for base employees.
Visit the UDPS website to find a rider skills training course at http://publicsafety.utah.gov/highwaysafety/motorcycleridertraining.html.