safety

MRF Visits Waymo: Latest In Robo-Taxis

Last week, the Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF) attended an event in Washington, D.C., hosted by Waymo, a self-driving car company. Titled “Every Mile Together: Waymo Safety Forum and Discussion,” this event included a panel discussion with executives for Waymo, the National Safety Council and the Governors Highway Safety Association. Waymo is a subsidiary of Google and is best known for its “robo-taxis.” These vehicles allow riders to hail a car and travel to a destination without a driver. Operating without a driver falls under the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) definition of “Level 4” automation. That NHTSA classification means, “When engaged, the system is fully responsible for driving tasks. A human driver is not needed to operate the vehicle.” An important takeaway from the event was that Waymo agrees with the MRF that current advertisements and the lack of transparency involving this modern technology are unacceptable. Other companies are operating vehicles with Level 2 autonomy. Misleading advertising means consumers are unaware of what tasks that automation level can perform. The Level 2 automation definition states: “Driver is fully responsible for driving the vehicle while the system provides continuous assistance with either acceleration/braking and steering.” The MRF is committed to fighting for the safety of bikers and will collaborate with allies on issues we agree upon. We thank the officials at Waymo for the invitation and for including us in these discussions. As a reminder, Waymo is operating in Phoenix, San Francisco and Los Angeles, with plans to start in Austin, Texas. These vehicles are on the road now and their presence is growing. Waymo will soon begin testing in other locations, so, as always, remain vigilant. Join The MRF — visit http://mrf.org/

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Federal Government Finalizes 2021 Crash Data

This month the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released its annual report, Traffic Safety Facts 2021: A Compilation of Motor Vehicle Traffic Crash Data. The 225-page report contains information on crash types, causes and participants involved. Remember that while we are nearing the end of 2023, this report is 2021 data. NHTSA spent nearly two years compiling these figures before releasing the report. The data on motorcyclist fatalities is especially troubling. According to the report, in 2021, motorcyclists made up 13.8% of all nationwide traffic fatalities, with 5,932 motorcyclists killed on our nation’s roadways. That is the highest number since data collection began in 1975. In comparison, the pre-Covid year of 2019 saw 5,044 bikers killed. The number of those injured on motorcycles reported in 2021 was 82,686, which is fewer than the all-time high of 104,442 in 2016. This total injury count represents 3.3% of the 2.5 million people injured in all motor vehicle crashes. It is important to note that 2021 showed a substantial increase in motorcycles registered. The data also shows an increase in vehicle miles traveled by bikers. NHTSA data shows 9.8 million registered motorcycles with approximately 19.6 billion miles traveled in 2021. Those increases mean that while the total number of fatalities and injuries went up, fortunately, the rate per 100,000 registered motorcycles went down. Here are other takeaways: Riders accounted for 95% of deaths, while 5% were motorcycle passengers. 57% of fatalities occurred by collision with another vehicle, 26% resulted from a collision with a fixed object, 4% collision with a non-fixed object, while 13% of fatalities occurred without a collision. 34% of fatalities involved a rider impaired by alcohol. That number is in line with the 31% of alcohol-related fatalities nationwide. Riders were wearing helmets in 59% of fatalities, while riders were

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Notice from the Federal Government

from Jay Jackson, MRF, with images from Sam Burns Establishment of the Motorcyclist Advisory Council (MAC) NHTSA announces the establishment of MAC for a 2-year period. The MAC will coordinate with and advise the Secretary of Transportation, the NHTSA Administrator and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Administrator on transportation issues of concern to motorcyclists, including: motorcycle and motorcyclist safety; barrier and road design, construction, and maintenance practices; and the architecture and implementation of intelligent transportation system technologies. NHTSA is also soliciting nominations for appointment to the MAC. Applications for membership must be received by NHTSA on or before 5 p.m. EST, December 15, 2023. Click and refer details in this article at Bikernet.com * * * * * * * * * * * * Support Bikernet.com by joining Bandit’s Cantina — click to know more. Keeping Freedom Alive!

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MRF “Road Show” is on the road all year long

Last week was a busy week for the MRF “Road Show”… Beginning in Ohio, President Kirk “Hardtail” Willard and Vice-President Jay Jackson attended the Hall of Fame induction ceremony at the American Motorcyclist Association Museum. MRF State Rep Sherry Hill and folks from ABATE of Ohio set up a membership table at the AMA’s Bike Night on Saturday. AMA hosted a Road Captain training that was attended by ABATE of Arizona, ABATE of Indiana, ABATE of Michigan and ABATE of Ohio on Sunday. This series of events also allowed facilitation of a meeting between the MRF President and representatives from the Federation Internationale De Motorcylisme (FIM) out of Switzerland and a member of the Board of Directors from the Federation of European Motorcyclists Associations (FEMA) out of Belgium. The topics of concern were End of Life Directives related to motorcycles, European and United Nations activities surrounding internal combustion engines and electric vehicle mandates. We also discussed the issues surrounding motorcycle parts certification and availability of parts. The timing was ideal as it allows this information to be disseminated in real time at the Meeting of the Minds this week in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The State Motorcycle Safety Association (SMSA) held their annual Summit in Columbus, Ohio September 13th through 16th. State motorcycle rights organizations from Alaska, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Ohio, and others were in attendance to learn the latest statistics, trends and issues related to motorcycle safety. MRF Vice President Jay Jackson presented “Promising Practices in Rider Training” as part of an alliance with six other states. The 2024 Summit will be held in Denver, Colorado. The week ended with the MRF President and Russell Radke, the MRF Motorcycle Club Representative to the MRF Board, attending the National Council of Clubs meeting in Dayton, Ohio. The highlights were participating in

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How Big Was The 2023 Sturgis Rally?

Hey, the 2023 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Attendance Was Down 8.1% Article & photos from sturgis.com with illustrations by Wayfarer Read on to see how the numbers break down. South Dakota Department of Transportation reported traffic numbers as well. How are all these statistics accounted? What are the numbers regarding taxation? Let’s find out. Click here for this Feature Article on Bikernet.com * * * * Join the crew at Bandit’s Cantina, click here.

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Recall of Harley Softails 2018 to 2023

Some 2018-2023 Harley Softails Could Have Breaking of Rear Shock Hardware. A fastener could break, causing the rear shock adjuster to loosen and increase the risk of a crash. Harley-Daivdson announced the safety recall on 29 August 2023. They filed the same with US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. On motorcycles that have the faulty fitting, the fastener used on a particular style of rear shock adjuster may potentially fracture. If it breaks, the shock absorber may then make contact with the rear tire. This could increase the risk of tire damage, and potentially lead to a motorcycle crash. Approximately 65,224 bikes may potentially be involved in this recall but not all of them may have this fault. Some of the models from 2018 to 2023 use the affected rear shock adjuster whereas some do not. The motorcycles that were produced between June 28, 2017 and August 7, 2023 are potentially at risk. No VIN number ranges are specified in the official safety recall notice. A warning sign that riders and passengers should look out for is any noise that seems to come from under the seat. When you remove the seat and find a loose shock adjuster, that may be another sign of faulty fastener. When shock adjuster makes contact with the rear tire, riders may notice unusual handling and/or atypical tire wear on the rear tire. Since June 2023, a total of 33 Warranty Claims regarding this issue has been recorded. Softails made after 7 August 2023 do not have this problem. Related accessories from Harley-Davidson have also been separately recalled. Owners may contact Harley-Davidson customer service at 1-800-258-2464. Additionally, owners may contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153) or go to www.nhtsa.gov. NHTSA’s number for this recall is 23V-591. The motorcycle model years, models,

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The Blessings of Petroleum Products

Compiled and Edited by Bandit Its more than just fuel for your vehicle Petroleum products are derived from crude oil and natural gas. Crude oil and natural gas are hydrocarbons and are made up of molecules of hydrogen and carbon. Petroleum products are used to produce heat, light, power, and transportation fuels. These are essential commodities in your daily life, in hospital emergency rooms, in your computer and mobile phone. Have a look at this detailed article to gain some insight & perspective…click here. * * * * * * * * Support Motorcycling Lifestyle. Get into the Bandit’s Cantina to know more.

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Motorcycle Awareness Month 2023

May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, and warmer weather means more motorcycles on the roads. We want to Remind Motorists to Share the Road and Be Alert. Always check your blind spots. Motorcycles are smaller than other vehicles and can be even more difficult to spot while merging or changing lanes. Be extra cautious when passing. Make sure to signal your intention to pass a motorcyclist. Remember that motorcycles react more quickly than cars. Make sure that you maintain an adequate following distance behind motorcycles. Be aware of the weather. Inclement weather has more drastic effects on motorcycle riders than on automobile drivers. Help riders stay safe after dark by increasing your following distance, ensuring that your high beams are turned off when you notice an approaching motorcycle, and refraining from passing. Stay in your lane. Motorcycles are legally entitled to their own lane of traffic. In no situation are you allowed to drive your automobile in the same lane and in close proximity to a motorcycle. Inform motorcyclists of your intention to turn. Initiate your turn signal sooner for motorcycles. Many vehicle accidents that involve both automobiles and motorcycles occur at intersections. Always follow the safety protocol for intersections every time that you approach one. Watch for turning motorcycles. If you notice that a motorcycle is driving with an activated turn signal for an abnormal distance, increase your following distance so you have time to react whenever the rider decides to turn. Take a second look at left turns. Before you cross a lane or lanes of traffic to turn left, take a second look for approaching motorcycles. Motorcyclists should always wear protective gear and be sure to use a DOT-compliant motorcycle helmet. For more information on motorcycle safety, visit nhtsa.gov. * * * * * * * *

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NHTSA Responds to Questions from Congress

Just before the end of 2022, Rep. Tim Walberg of Michigan and 26 of his colleagues in Congress sent a letter to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) regarding recent crashes that involve motorcycles and cars believed to be in self-driving mode. The response from government regulators has some key takeaways: “NHTSA is actively working to educate consumers and the media that automated driving system (ADS) technologies are not self-driving technologies, and that drivers must always remain engaged in the driving task.” “Crashes involving motorcycles account for less than 2 percent of all reported crashes involving ADS.” “NHTSA is conducting research on how vehicles equipped with crash avoidance technologies react to motorcycles, bicyclists and other vulnerable road users in various scenarios.” The Motorcycle Riders Foundation is committed to aggressively working with lawmakers to address obvious safety gaps in the deployment of this new technology. While we appreciate that NHTSA is conducting research on this topic, on this topic, motorcyclists are not “vulnerable road users”, motorcyclists are simply road users. Additionally, it’s unacceptable that consumers falsely believe this technology, deployed on our roads, allows them to sit back and relax while in the driver’s seat. The safety of the nearly 10 million bikers on our nation’s roadways requires that all roadway users act in a responsible manner. As always Ride Safe and Ride Free. About Motorcycle Riders Foundation: The Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF) provides leadership at the federal level for states’ motorcyclists’ rights organizations as well as motorcycle clubs and individual riders. Visit http://mrf.org * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Stay updated, stay ahead of the curve. Click to Sign up for the Weekly Newsletter from Bikernet Blog for free.

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Helping Veterans : Biker Lives Matter

by Rogue Biker Lives Matter continues to provide Accident Scene Management Courses with the American Legion in Florida. Crashes and collisions continue to increase involving motorcycles and one of the most effective ways for those involved to survive is to be treated at the scene by others until more trained people like EMTs arrive. The American Legion is a very large organization and each chapters can include a motorcycle group named Legion Riders. Working with the American Legion organization affords out teachers to reach a lot of people. The more people trained the higher the possibility of saving more lives. Click here to read this article because Biker Lives Matter. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Know your rights and freedoms. Read the Thursday News only on Bikernet.com by clicking here.  

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