EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Rhode Island State Police are encouraging motorcycle operators and their passengers to use extra caution this summer, due to an increase in motorcycle fatalities this year.
Between January 1 and June 30, six people died in motorcycle crashes, according to the Department of Transportation’s Office of Highway Safety.
That is double the number of motorcycle fatalities for the same period in 2017.
There were 11 deadly motorcycle crashes for all of last year.
It is also the highest number of motorcycle deaths in a single year since 2014 when six were reported for the entire year.
“We are extremely concerned about this increase in motorcycle fatalities, especially given that we’re in the peak season for motorcycle riding,” says Colonel Ann C. Assumpico, Superintendent of the Rhode Island State Police and Director of the Department of Public Safety.
According to federal highway statistics, deadly motorcycle crashes spike from June through September.
So, state police are urging all drivers to pay extra attention to the roads for motorcyclists.
They are also offering these safety tips and reminders for motorcycle operators:
- Always wear a helmet and eye protection.
- Wear protective, bright-colored clothing.
- Keep high beams on during the day to improve visibility.
- Avoid distractions, including cell phones and other electronic devices
- Obey all traffic laws and rules of the road.
- NEVER operate a motorcycle or any motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Ride defensively – don’t assume other drivers can see you; be aware of other vehicles nearby; allow extra distance between other vehicles, and be prepared to take evasive action if need be.