A new House Bill, 2094, has been introduced and referred to the House Business and Financial Services Committee. The proposed law would remove the motorcycle exclusion from Washington's motor vehicle insurance requirements. Click on this link for more information: http://app.leg.wa.gov/billinfo/summary.aspx?bill=2094&year=2015
Video from the Senate Transportation Committee Hearing on 2/9/15
Video from the Senate Transportation Committee Hearing on SB 5623 - 2/3/15
This video explains the safety considerations behind lane-splitting or lane-sharing from the rider's perspective. A lot of cagers (drivers) who have never ridden see lane-splitting as dangerous. In reality lane-splitting has been demonstrated to be a safe and economical approach to sharing the road.
Truck Driver Convicted of Killing and Injuring Group of Motorcyclists
PHOENIX -- A jury has convicted a truck driver who slammed into a group of motorcycle riders in 2010 -- killing four of them and injuring five others.
Michael Jakscht, 49, was found guilty on four counts of manslaughter and multiple counts of aggravated assault. This was the second trial for Jakscht.
Jakscht was the man behind the wheel of a 23,000-pound dump truck in March 2010 when the vehicle failed to stop at a traffic light along the Carefree Highway and slammed into a group of motorcycle riders that had stopped for a light.
Jakscht was charged with four counts of manslaughter and multiple counts of aggravated assault because prosecutors said he had methamphetamine in his system at the time of the crash.
Jakscht defense lawyers had argued vigorously that their client was not impaired and that the crash was a terrible "accident" caused by a mechanical failure in the massive truck.
Jakscht's first trial last year ended with a hung jury deadlock 9 to 3 for acquittal.
The Maricopa County attorney's office decided to retry the case. Closing arguments in round two of the State v. Michael Jakscht were delivered to a new jury on Monday.
From the GHSA Report:
New Study: No Progress in Reducing Motorcyclist Deaths Strengthening Economy and Rising Gas Prices Don’t Bode Well
WASHINGTON, D.C.—A report released today by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) finds that no progress was made in reducing motorcyclist deaths in 2011. Based upon preliminary data from 50 states and the District of Columbia, GHSA projects that motorcycle fatalities remained at about 4,500 in 2011, the same level as 2010. Meanwhile, earlier this month, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration projected that overall motor vehicle fatalities declined 1.7 percent in 2011, reaching their lowest level since 1949. Motorcycle deaths remain one of the few areas in highway safety where progress is not being made.
The new report – the first state-by-state look at motorcycle fatalities occurring in 2011 – was authored by Dr. James Hedlund of Highway Safety North. Most states have reasonably complete fatality counts for at least the first nine months of 2011, enabling GHSA to confidently project the full year. Dr. Hedlund completed similar projections for GHSA in 2009 and 2010, with both being very close to the final fatality numbers.
Comparing the first nine months of 2010 to 2011, motorcyclist fatalities decreased in twenty-three states, with notable declines in many. In Connecticut, for example, motorcycle deaths dropped 37 percent, while in New York and North Carolina they fell 16 and 21 percent, respectively. GHSA’s member in New York State is the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee (GTSC). According to Barbara J. Fiala, Commissioner of the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles and Chair of GTSC, the decrease in fatal motorcycle crashes in that state is due to a mix of countermeasures focusing on enforcement, education and engineering: “In New York, we are educating motorists to watch for motorcycles, riders to wear bright protective gear to make themselves more visible, and law enforcement officers on conducting efficient and effective motorcycle checks,” Fiala said. “It is encouraging to see that these efforts, which have been conducted with our state and local partners, are making a difference.”
Twenty-six states and the District Columbia, on the other hand, reported an increase in motorcyclist deaths. In South Carolina and Texas, they rose 26 and 16 percent, respectively, while in California they increased 10 percent. GHSA’s Immediate Past Chairman and Director of California’s Office of Traffic Safety, Christopher J. Murphy, pointed out that the state experienced a dramatic 37 percent decline in motorcycle deaths from 2008 to 2010, so while disappointing, it would not be unexpected to see a smaller decline or even an increase, for 2011.
The economy influences motorcycle travel in several ways. With the economy improving in 2011 and furthering strengthening in 2012, more people will have disposable income for purchasing and riding motorcycles. At the same time, rising gas prices may cause more individuals to choose motorcycles for transportation because of their fuel efficiency.
For his work on behalf of GHSA, Dr. Hedlund compared gas prices, motorcycle registrations, and motorcyclist fatality trends since 1976. He found that for the entire period fatalities closely track registrations, with significant similarities from 1990 to 2008. At the same time, as gas prices increase, fatalities also rise.
Another disturbing trend is the decrease in states with universal helmet laws. Helmet laws are the only motorcycle safety strategy whose effectiveness is rated as five-star in NHTSA’s highly-regarded publication, “Countermeasures That Work.” Only 19 states currently require all riders to wear helmets, down from 26 in 1997. Earlier this year, Michigan repealed its universal helmet law, while similar legislation has been introduced in five other states. No state has enacted a universal helmet law since Louisiana reinstated its requirement in 2004.
Troy Costales, GHSA Chairman said, “It is disappointing that we are not making progress in motorcycle safety, particularly as fatalities involving other motorists continue to decline. As the study notes, the strengthening economy, high gas prices, and the lack of all-rider helmet laws leave me concerned about the final numbers for 2011 and 2012. Every motorcyclist deserves to arrive at their destination safely. These fatality figures represent real people – they’re family, friends and neighbors.”
Costales added, “The good news is that we know how to prevent crashes and the resulting injuries and fatalities involving motorcycle riders’ and their passengers. There are effective strategies that, if implemented, can make a difference.” Specifically, the report recommends states address five issues:
All data in the report are preliminary. The report presents data through September 2011. State-by-state data are available from GHSA.
A Vancouver rider was killed Tuesday morning. Be careful approaching intersections as cagers may not see you while making a left turn. This was apparently compounded by a bad intersection.
EDIT: Not a well-written article. I have looked at the scene and it appears the cager pulled out from a stop sign into the path of the motorcycle and the motorcycle T-boned the van. She obviously did not check twice for motorcycles!
Details from the Columbian:
A Vancouver man died and a woman was injured Tuesday morning when a motorcycle hit a minivan in the East Minnehaha neighborhood.
The crash happened around 10:30 a.m. at the intersection of Northeast 63rd Street and 58th Avenue.
The motorcyclist who was killed was identified as Paul Austin, 45.
A 2005 Aprilia motorcycle was traveling west on Northeast 63rd Street and hit a 2000 Ford van, which was making a left turn onto eastbound 63rd Street from 58th Avenue, said Sgt. Dennis Pritchard with the sheriff’s Traffic Homicide Unit. The motorcycle was traveling at an excessive speed, which is believed to be a factor in the crash, he said.
Vancouver firefighters were called to the scene from nearby Station 5. When they arrived, bystanders were performing CPR on Austin, said Capt. Kevin Murray, Vancouver fire spokesman. Firefighters took over resuscitation efforts, but Austin was pronounced dead at the scene, Murray said.
Louise Krovas, 87, of Sammamish, the driver of the van, was not cited. Krovas, the only person in the van, was admitted to PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center with injuries not believed to be life threatening, the sheriff’s office said in a release.
“Anytime there’s a fatality, the person in the other vehicle is transported,” fire spokesman Murray said. Many times they’re in shock, he added.
Krovas was listed in satisfactory condition Tuesday night.
Sheriff’s deputies deployed flares and Clark County Public Works set up barriers on Northeast 63rd Street at Andresen Road to the east and Northeast 56th Avenue to the west, where 63rd Street’s name changes to Northeast Minnehaha Street.
Detectives with the sheriff’s office Traffic Homicide Unit investigated the crash.
Jeff Barram lives near the scene of the crash. He’s heard of several crashes at the intersection before.
“This is the first one I’ve seen that’s fatal,” he said.
Turning left can take a long time and it’s hard to see because of a hill on Northeast 63rd Street, he said.
“It’s just a terrible intersection,” he said.
His wife, Emily Barram, said the road is particularly bad in the summer.
Gov. Snyder signed a helmet law repeal bill on Thursday making Michigan the 31st state with an optional helmet law.
Motorcyclists can forgo a helmet if they are at least 21 years old, carry at least an additional $20,000 in medical insurance and have either passed a motorcycle safety course or had their motorcycle endorsement for at least two years. Passengers also must be 21 or older to go helmetless, and there has to be an additional $20,000 in insurance for the passenger, bought either by the passenger or the motorcycle driver.
From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20120413/POLITICS02/204130397#ixzz1s2Fx61kn
A 20-year-old man who lost control of his motorcycle in the Lacey Costco parking lot and crashed into two other vehicles Saturday has died, according to Lacey police. He was identified as Jordan M. Clark of Centralia.
Witnesses said Clark had been driving with his front wheel off the ground at an unsafe speed, according to Lacey police.
Clark was later taken to Providence St. Peter Hospital in Olympia, where he died. No one else was injured.
NEW RIDERS: Please take a motorcycle safety course! Learn to respect your motorcycle! Ride Safe!