Improving Motorcycle Safety Aim of SFPD Operations
The San Francisco Police Department will be conducting a specialized Motorcycle Safety Enforcement Operation in 2014 in an effort to lower deaths and injuries. Extra officers will be on duty patrolling areas frequented by motorcyclists and where motorcycle crashes occur. Officers will be looking for violations made by drivers and riders alike that can lead to motorcycle crashes. They will be cracking down on both those operating regular vehicles and motorcycles who are under the influence of drugs or alcohol, speeding, making illegal turns, or any other dangerous violation.
Motorcycle fatalities saw a phenomenal drop of 37 percent from 2008 to 2010, but then rose 23 percent by 2012. Operations like this are aimed at curbing any more rises in motorcycle deaths and sending the numbers back downward. In 2013, San Francisco had this many collisions involving motorcycles:
181 - Collisions
194 - Collisions with injuries
0 - Fatal collisions
California collision data reveals that primary causes of motorcycle-involved crashes include speeding, unsafe turning and impairment due to alcohol and other drugs. The San Francisco Police Department is also reminding all motorists to always be alert and watch out for motorcycles, especially when turning and changing lanes. Drivers should be aware that motorcycle lane splitting is not illegal if done in a safe and prudent manner. Motorcycle riders should consult the Lane Splitting General Guidelines to learn more – www.ots.ca.gov/lanesplittinggeneralguidelines.pdf.
Riders can get training through the California Motorcyclist Safety Program. Information and training locations are available at www.CA-msp.org or 1-877 RIDE 411 or 1-877-743-3411.
Funding for this program is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The message to all drivers and motorcyclists is: share in the responsibility and do your part by safely “sharing the road.”