Island drivers urged to watch out for motorcycles as crash risk rises this spring

Island drivers urged to watch out for motorcycles as crash risk rises this spring

Motorcycle riders across B.C. are starting to take out their bikes and hit the road — renewing an annual reminder that as the temperature rises, so does the risk of crashes.

According to the province, motorcycles make up about 3.5 per cent of insured vehicles on B.C. roads, yet they account for more than 10 per cent of total roadway fatalities. On average, 40 riders are killed on B.C. roads every year.

Local motorcycle instructor Ron Cronk from the Vancouver Island Safety Council knows that when some people leave their bikes in the garage all winter long, sometimes basic safety is forgotten when it comes to protecting themselves and other drivers on the road.

“The beginning of the year, people are a little rusty, things for motorcyclists to be aware of are always those shoulder checks wherever the bike moves laterally, clearing every intersection that they come upon and be predictable for those cars around them,” says Cronk.

According to ICBC, there are on average, seven motorcyclists killed in crashes each year on Vancouver Island.

RELATED: 23-year-old man airlifted to hospital following a motorcycle crash in Nanaimo

Trevor Franklin was lucky enough not to become one of those statistics.

His days on the bike almost came to an end in September 2020 when he was involved in a bad accident that broke all of his ribs.

Now fully recovered, he doesn’t shy away from reminding all drivers to be alert on the road.

“It’s about being aware of that single headlight that’s out there… that we’re smaller so we are probably a lot closer than you think,” says Franklin.

As for motorcycle riders, Cronk has some simple advice for all skill levels.

“Obey the law, ride safely and have some situational awareness about your riding.”

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