AAA: Motorcycle deaths up 23 percent in Michigan - WNEM TV 5

AAA: Motorcycle deaths up 23 percent in Michigan

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With summer weather heating up, more motorcycles are hitting Michigan roadways and officials are warning both riders and drivers to take precautions.

Michigan motorcycle deaths rose 23 percent from 112 to 138 between 2014 and 2015, according to AAA. The auto club reports Michigan ranks 10th highest in the national for number of motorcycle fatalities.

“While helmet laws are a controversial issue, AAA strongly supports helmets laws,” said Susan Hiltz, AAA Michigan Public Affairs Director. “Bottom line, helmets save lives.”

Studies show helmets have proven to be 37 percent effective in preventing deaths in a motorcycle crash, according to NHTSA. For every 100 motorcycle riders killed in crashes while not wearing a helmet, 37 could have been saved.

"Bikers should do everything possible to make themselves visible to motorists while riding," added Hiltz. “Motorists need to keep their attention on the task of driving and be alert for increased motorcycle traffic. Motorcyclists can increase their visibility by riding with their lights on or adding reflective gear to their bike. AAA reminds everyone to always drive sober. Whether you’re hitting the road on a Harley or a hot rod, alcohol and other drugs seriously impair your ability to drive safely.”

Officials said motorcycles accounted for 14 percent of motor vehicle deaths in the state. 

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