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Motorcycle deaths rise sharply
By Emily Bazar, USA TODAY
Motorcycle fatalities nationwide have surged to their highest levels since 1987, even as overall highway deaths continue to decline.

Last year, 4,008 motorcycle riders were killed in highway accidents.
By Ben Garver, AP

Last year, 4,008 motorcycle riders were killed in highway accidents, up 7.9% from 2003 and 89% higher than in 1997, according to a new National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report. Meanwhile, passenger car deaths dropped 3.2% to 19,091 last year.

The increase in motorcycle deaths has spurred Congress to add $3 million to a federal transportation bill for a study on motorcycle crashes. President Bush is set to sign the measure this week.

"What we need now are answers, not theories," said Tom Lindsay, spokesman for the American Motorcyclist Association.

Possible causes: a sharp rise in motorcycle ownership, rollback of mandatory helmet laws and an increase in inexperienced bikers riding powerful machines.

Americans bought an estimated 734,000 new on-highway motorcycles last year, up from 230,000 in 1995, said Tim Buche, president of the Motorcycle Safety Foundation.

But more motorcycles don't account for the entire increase. The fatality rate is also on the rise.

In 2003, the most recent year for which statistics are available for motorcycles, the fatality rate was 38.38 per 100 million miles traveled. In 2002, that figure was 34.23.

By contrast, the fatality rate for all highway drivers has improved for decades and in 2004 was 1.46 per 100 million miles traveled.

Rae Tyson, spokesman for the highway administration, said blame may lie partly with states that have scaled back helmet laws. A study released by the agency Monday showed an 81% rise in motorcycle deaths in Florida in a three-year period after the state repealed its law in 2000.

Motorcycle groups opposed to helmet laws point to the changing face of bikers. Jeff Rabe, lobbyist for the Modified Motorcycle Association of California, said more "middle-aged executives" are riding powerful machines without training. "There's a huge group of people ages 35 to 50 who have purchased motorcycles," Rabe said. "But they're still beginning riders."
 

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Combat Marshmellow
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i put the blame on the stupid friggen cagers....
 

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---> "said blame may lie partly with states that have scaled back helmet laws. A study released by the agency Monday showed an 81% rise in motorcycle deaths in Florida in a three-year period after the state repealed its law in 2000."

The women that was instrumental in lobbying the Florida legislature to repeal the helmet law was killed early in 2004 while riding a motorcycle - she had massive head injuries and was NOT wearing a helmet. Mr. Darwin - your dinner party is here.
 

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KatanaMike said:
The women that was instrumental in lobbying the Florida legislature to repeal the helmet law was killed early in 2004 while riding a motorcycle - she had massive head injuries and was NOT wearing a helmet. Mr. Darwin - your dinner party is here.
I dont want "died for vanity" on my tombstone.
 

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KatanaMike said:
---> "said blame may lie partly with states that have scaled back helmet laws. A study released by the agency Monday showed an 81% rise in motorcycle deaths in Florida in a three-year period after the state repealed its law in 2000."

The women that was instrumental in lobbying the Florida legislature to repeal the helmet law was killed early in 2004 while riding a motorcycle - she had massive head injuries and was NOT wearing a helmet. Mr. Darwin - your dinner party is here.
Got a link to that little tidbit of info?
 

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KatanaMike said:
---> "said blame may lie partly with states that have scaled back helmet laws. A study released by the agency Monday showed an 81% rise in motorcycle deaths in Florida in a three-year period after the state repealed its law in 2000."

The women that was instrumental in lobbying the Florida legislature to repeal the helmet law was killed early in 2004 while riding a motorcycle - she had massive head injuries and was NOT wearing a helmet. Mr. Darwin - your dinner party is here.
That's an interesting bit of irony right there... Probably all because she didn't want helmet hair.
 

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mj31 said:
an increase in inexperienced bikers riding powerful machines.
It would be interesting to see statistically what bike you're most likely to die on. My guess would be the R6, GSXR600, R1, or GSXR1000.
 

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TemtnF8 said:
...Probably all because she didn't want helmet hair.
...which is really stoopid.

Is there anything hotter than a babe shaking out her long hair after dismounting her sportbike and taking off a full-face helmet? I think not.
 

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be thankful they arent moving towards having bike licenses for different size bikes like they do elsewhere in the world.

although that 'could' be a good thing....
 

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I think we'd all be far better off if, instead of protecting us from ourselves, if the government focused more on protecting us from each other.

Here's what I mean: it generally takes much more training and more stringent testing to get a motorcycle license - which is a special class of licence - than it does to drive a car, any car. But a motorcycle is far, far less likely to injure other people or damage property than a 2-ton SUV, which requires much less education and no special license to operate.

IMO, this is exactly backwards. The more of a danger a vehicle poses to others owing to its size, weight, and poor handling characteristics, the more demanding should be the licensing to operate it.

I think everybody, barring specific physical incapacity, should be required to learn to ride and be licensed for motorcycles first, with special, more restrictive licensing required for cars, trucks and SUVs because they pose more of a danger to others.
 

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---> It would be interesting to see statistically what bike you're most likely to die on. My guess would be the R6, GSXR600, R1, or GSXR1000

Actually, it's a cruiser bike and you are likely to be in your mid-40's and either just started riding for the first time or after a long lay-off.
 

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You got that right.
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GreenZED said:
I dont want "died for vanity" on my tombstone.
Fuck that. Let's keep them out of the gene pool. I see HD rider's with stickers on their brain buckets that say something to the effect, "Helmet Laws Suck", or "Fuck Helmet Laws".

Repeal the helmet laws, all of them. Let Natural Selection work and we'll become a species w/ a stronger gene pool, IMO.
 

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mikem317 said:
Fuck that. Let's keep them out of the gene pool. I see HD rider's with stickers on their brain buckets that say something to the effect, "Helmet Laws Suck", or "Fuck Helmet Laws".

Repeal the helmet laws, all of them. Let Natural Selection work and we'll become a species w/ a stronger gene pool, IMO.
Unfortunately, most of these helmetless Harley tough-guy types are old guys who have already propogated their defective genes, so I don't think natural selection is really going to help much unless they buy their own young offspring motorcycles of their own before they have a chance to reproduce. It might take a generation or two for Darwin to get things under control.
 

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F&D said:
Unfortunately, most of these helmetless Harley tough-guy types are old guys who have already propogated their defective genes, so I don't think natural selection is really going to help much unless they buy their own young offspring motorcycles of their own before they have a chance to reproduce. It might take a generation or two for Darwin to get things under control.
LOL, that was some funny shit. Darwin or not, I think stupiditiy is here to stay. Even Darwin would tell you that the whole species benefits from stupidity of some of their members, after all, without stupidity, there would be nothing to screen out. You can never have a perfect species, although cats come pretty close to it.
 

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what R you lookin' at?
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saq said:
It would be interesting to see statistically what bike you're most likely to die on. My guess would be the R6, GSXR600, R1, or GSXR1000.
i bet it wouldnt be.........i think it's a HD, remember, sheer #'s
 

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F&D said:
I think we'd all be far better off if, instead of protecting us from ourselves, if the government focused more on protecting us from each other.

Here's what I mean: it generally takes much more training and more stringent testing to get a motorcycle license - which is a special class of licence - than it does to drive a car, any car. But a motorcycle is far, far less likely to injure other people or damage property than a 2-ton SUV, which requires much less education and no special license to operate.

IMO, this is exactly backwards. The more of a danger a vehicle poses to others owing to its size, weight, and poor handling characteristics, the more demanding should be the licensing to operate it.

I think everybody, barring specific physical incapacity, should be required to learn to ride and be licensed for motorcycles first, with special, more restrictive licensing required for cars, trucks and SUVs because they pose more of a danger to others.

Ladies and Gentlemen, we have a winner! F&D for President!
 

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saq said:
It would be interesting to see statistically what bike you're most likely to die on. My guess would be the R6, GSXR600, R1, or GSXR1000.
thats because people who never ever drove a motorcycle in their lives go out and buy these bikes, and are topping them out, and trying wheelies the instant they figure out how to get it going. IMO its not the bike that kills, its the idiot on top of the bike that does. i have stated the reasoning for this OPINION in like four other posts tho.
 

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I don't think the helmet law alone is the culprit for these fatalities. You need to be in an accident for the helmet to work. What's the cause of these accidents is my question.With all due importance given to riding gear, its use is an after-the-fact occurence as "extra measure" designed to minimize injury in an event of a crash.

I'd rather think that a better driver education system will be the most effective safety measure that can be improved and developed further.

Everyday drivers/riders are always in a rush. They get into their vehicles for a quick and convenient transportation to get to their destination as fast as possible. If everyone else is doing the same thing, that collective habit can actually create bottlenecks on public roadways especially on the highways when all you have to do is tap on your brake lights and you can cause a full stop traffic 2 miles behind you on a full highway.

Simple ideas embedded to each and every wayfarer, like....Keep right except to pass, signal well ahead and head check before changing lanes, pull into the right lane when approached by a faster vehicle from behind. With these ideas alone if implemented can raise safety even when the speed limits are raised. The thing with US drivers is that we actually drive to protect our space and don't care much about what it is doing to other vehicles. Awareness and courtesy goes a long way and we don't know how to be courteous when we drive or ride and definitely become negatively aware if somebody seems to be crowding our space.

But, we don't care about that nor we dare to understand, do we?
 
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