CDOT urges drivers to use caution amid rise in motorcycle deaths

Staff Report / Summit Daily
motorcycle deaths
A display of 103 motorcycle helmets meant to provide a visual representation of the motorcyclists killed in 2018.
Courtesy Colorado Department of Transportation

The Colorado Department of Transportation and the Colorado State Patrol gathered Monday at the CDOT headquarters in Denver to remember the motorcyclists killed in 2018 and to help raise awareness about motorcycle safety.

Gov. Jared Polis issued a proclamation designating the day as Colorado Motorcyclist Memorial Day, hoping to inform the state of an increase in motorcycle deaths in recent years.

“Today, we speak for the ones who can’t be with us,” CDOT executive director Shoshana Lew said in a news release. “If you’re in a car or on a motorcycle, we want everyone traveling on Colorado’s roads to be watchful and safe.”

In 2018, there were 103 motorcycle riders killed in Colorado. There have been 65 motorcyclist deaths this year compared with 60 at this time last year. According to CDOT, motorcycle fatalities increased 30% from 2012 to 2018, reaching a peak with 125 deaths in 2016.

CDOT is reminding drivers to check their blind spots, look twice before merging, use extra caution when turning left, never follow motorcyclists too closely and to eliminate distractions while driving.

Over the next few weeks, CDOT will begin a social media campaign urging drivers to be more careful around motorcyclists and will be posting safety messages on its digital message boards on roadways around the state.

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