How you can contribute to keeping bikers safe on the road

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Sharing the road with motorcycles may not be something drivers think about every day, but it could be more important now.

The Springfield Police Department tells KOLR10’s Frances Lin that in the spring and fall, there are more motorcycles on the road because more bikers like to ride in good weather.

Springfield bikers said they’ve already seen a couple of friends get into accidents lately, and are asking drivers on the road to please look twice and save a life.

“It just seems like lately, we’re all expendable. Today we’re burying one of our friends, another one our friends got killed that very night,” said Jeremiah Mahan, a biker, “our friend Rick on the orange bike, he got hit on Tuesday, sitting dead still at a stoplight.”

“A big crash, flipped me back and then hit the car in front of me, flipped me off of the bike,” said Rick Gill, another biker, “you could definitely be a fatality if you’re not careful.”

“You’re more prone to be injured off a bike, and then with a motorcycle, no helmet law, you’re more apt to have a greater injury,” said Corporal Ken Hall, with the Springfield Police Department.

Hall explained how drivers should share the road, “take an extra second to look, see what’s coming, look for pedestrians, bicycles, motorcycles. Give them the same amount of room you would a car. You might even give them more room because a motorcycle can brake faster than a car can.”

He said there are always more bikers out during this time of year, but the number of accidents are the same as in past years.

“We average one to two crashes a day, involving a motorcycle,” said Hall, “we’re going to see an increase because there are more motorcycles out there. It happens every spring and every fall when the weather gets to be ideal.”

Local bikers tell KOLR10’s Frances Lin they want to urge drivers to be more careful on the road.

“Everybody wants to see us go home safely,” Mahan said, “this isn’t just something that we do, this isn’t a recreation, this is our life. I mean, this is our lifestyle. Look at all of us, we live for this stuff.”

“We have a little game now we’re trying to teach children, is motorcycle tickle. You see a motorcycle going down the road, you tickle your sibling. Well, the parents will help them look for motorcycles, they’re seeing motorcycles that way,” said Rick Hart, another biker.

And hope drivers will help them get home safe.

“A lot of people have misconceptions about us, you know, yeah we look rough, this and that, but we’re fathers, we’re sons,” Mahan said.

“Some people drive with four tires, some people drive with two, but we got families just like everybody else does that we’re trying to get to,” said Hart.

“Just because we wear leather, and we ride a Harley doesn’t make us bad people,” Gill said, “not disregard us as a bunch of scuzzy bikers. I’d like to feel safe out there, honestly.”

The Springfield Police Department is also working on a new project called “share the road.”

It’s a motorcycle safety training program free to riders.

If you want to participate, you need to have a motorcycle license, have your own bike, and sign up.

For more information, visit Https://www.Springfieldmo.Gov/5289/share-the-road-motorcycle-course

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