Oklahoma Motorcycle Safety Laws & Helmet Usage
Oklahoma Motorcycle Accident Information
In 2015 alone, 1,470 motorcycle accidents were reported in the state of Oklahoma. 88 of these accidents were fatal, 313 resulted in incapacitating injuries, and 541 resulted in serious but non-life threatening injuries.
When Oklahoma begins to warm after a cold winter and weather becomes more mild, motorcyclists begin flocking to the state’s beautiful rural highways, interstates, and county roads. Almost 90% of all motorcycle accidents occur between the months of March and October. The majority of these coincide with evening rush hour traffic between 4pm and 7pm. In addition, more accidents occur on weekends than weekdays.
The vast majority of Oklahoma motorcycle accidents are caused by negligent drivers. In fact, for 1,104 of the accidents that occurred in 2015, the weather was completely clear. The leading causes of collision include: negligent driver, unsafe speed of the motorcycle, and negligence by the motorcyclist.
87% of motorcyclists involved in a collision are males. Of these males, the most common age range was 26 to 30 with 160 accidents. The next most common age range was 51 to 55 with 154 accidents. Each year, as the number of registered motorcyclists has risen, so too has the number of fatalities.
Oklahoma Motorcycle Helmet and Safety Laws
The state of Oklahoma is known as a partial helmet law state. This means that helmets are not a universal requirement for all riders. Rather, the only motorcyclists who are required by law to wear a helmet while on a bike are individuals aged seventeen or younger.
With that said, the decision not to wear a helmet should not be taken lightly. Research has shown that helmets decrease the risk of traumatic brain injuries and brain-related fatalities among motorcyclists by a whopping 37%.
In addition, in the state of Oklahoma, anyone wishing to operate a motorcycle must first obtain a motorcycle permit. This is known as an M endorsement that appears on your regular driver’s license. In order to obtain an M endorsement, adults must submit forms, take a vision test, pass a written test, and pass an in-person driving test. In lieu of the driving test, an adult may instead enroll in and pass a motorcycle safety foundation course that includes a driving component.
As of August 26, 2016, any rider aged 17 or younger will be required to take a certified basic training course on motorcycle riding before obtaining a license with a motorcycle endorsement.
Oklahoma Motorcycle Safety Tips
At Car Accident Help, we support our local bikers and encourage you to enjoy the beautiful scenery of Oklahoma. In order to protect yourself on your ride, we recommend the following safety tips.
- Wear protective gear. This includes a sturdy jacket, thick jeans or pants, motorcycle boots, and gloves. In the event of an accident, heavy duty gear will protect your skin from injury.
- Wear a helmet. Even though it isn’t required by law, a helmet will protect the most important part of your body if an accident occurs.
- Avoid riding during inclement weather. When visibility is reduced or the roads are slick due to ice or rain, you face a higher risk of a collision caused by unforeseen conditions or a negligent driver.
- Follow traffic laws and posted signs. You may experience the urge to feel the wind hit your face as you race down the road, but unsafe speeds and motorcyclist traffic violations are two of the leading causes of collisions. By being safe and following the law, you will also be better able to react to another driver’s negligence.
Obtain Assistance with Your Oklahoma Motorcycle Accident Claim
The dedicated Oklahoma motorcycle accident lawyers at Car Accident Help will zealously advocate for your best interests. To schedule a free accident evaluation, call us at (405) 285-4357.
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