NTSB to Review Motorcycle Safety

Source: Jean-Marie Guyon - 123RF

The National Transportation Safety Board will meet Sept. 11 in Washington, D.C., to discuss motorcycle crash risks and crash prevention through better integration of motorcycles in crash warning and prevention systems and the use of advanced braking and stability control systems.

NTSB announced Aug. 30 that, during the meeting, which is scheduled to begin at 9:30 a.m., staffers from its Office of Research and Engineering and the Office of Highway Safety will present to the board findings and recommendations from a safety report on select risk factors associated with the causes of motorcycle crashes.

Operating a motorcycle requires a different combination of physical and mental skills than those used in driving four-wheel vehicles. Motorcyclists and their passengers are more vulnerable to the hazards of weather and road conditions than drivers in closed vehicles.

While the safety board doesn’t typically investigate motorcycle crashes, it conducted a motorcycle safety forum in 2006 and issued recommendations from that forum two years later. It has been more than 10 years since NTSB has issued new recommendations to help reduce motorcycle crashes and improve safety.

According to the NTSB, motorcycle crashes accounted for 14 percent of all traffic fatalities in 2016 – 5,286 people died in motorcycle crashes, up 5.1 percent from 5,029 in 2015 – while representing less than one percent of all vehicle miles traveled.