OLYMPIA, WA — More motorcycles travel on Washington’s roads in the summer months than any other time of the year. Unfortunately, summer is also the time when more motorcycle riders are killed or injured in crashes. In an effort to reduce these crashes, increased motorcycle safety patrols start July 28, and run through August 13 in Pierce, King, and Snohomish Counties.
The patrols will focus on illegal driving behaviors by both motorcycle riders and other vehicle drivers. Approximately 20 law enforcement agencies in these counties, including the Washington State Patrol, will be working overtime focused on drivers and riders who commit traffic safety violations.
“Motorcyclists are especially vulnerable and continue to be over-represented in deadly crashes,” said WTSC Director Darrin Grondel. “These crashes are preventable and we are working together to end these tragic deaths.”
These patrols are part of the Washington Traffic Safety Commission’s (WTSC) motorcycle safety education campaign known as “It’s a Fine Line.” From 2014 through 2016, motorcycles made up just 4 percent of the registered vehicles on Washington’s roads, but accounted for nearly 15 percent of all traffic fatalities (223 of 1550). Of these fatal motorcycle crashes, 53 percent were single motorcycle crashes where no other vehicle was involved, and 75 percent were traced to causal factors committed by the motorcyclist. Driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs and alcohol, speeding, and running off the road are the main contributing factors in all motor vehicle deaths including motorcycles.
“Each summer in our state, we lose 35-40 people to motorcycle crashes, and that’s not acceptable,” Grondel added. “We want to ensure that everyone enjoys the ride and arrives home safely.”
The WTSC and participating law enforcement agencies condemn profiling. Trained and commissioned law enforcement officers will be conducting these patrols enforcing traffic violations as defined by Washington State laws.
For training videos and other information on the “It’s A Fine Line” motorcycle safety program in Washington, please visit http://itsafineline.com/