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Motorcycle accident prevention: Illinois urged to pay attention

April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month and while people typically visualize car accidents when they think of distracted driving, it's important to remember that driving any motor vehicle while distracted could cause an accident. To illustrate this point, one motorcycle enthusiast of Quincy, Illinois, recently recounted his distracted driving episode to a staff writer with the Quincy Herald-Whig newspaper.

According to the 59-year-old, a moment of not paying careful attention caused a motorcycle accident that nearly cost him his life. He reportedly crashed into a car that was making a left turn and ended up in the hospital with a huge list of catastrophic injuries including two broken cheekbones, disc injuries to his back, a skull fracture and severe breaks in both legs to name just a few.

Believe it or not, this tale of an Illinois motorcycle accident actually has a happy ending because this driver lived to ride again. Unfortunately, two other Quincy residents did not fare so well this past year and died following their motorcycle accidents. With spring bursting out all over the place, paying close attention to the roads is more important than ever, especially to motorcycle riders in Illinois and other states.

According to a Quincy police officer, the burden of responsibility to keep roadways safe for everyone lies with both motorcyclists and motorists. People driving cars, trucks and other four or more wheeled vehicles should be aware that more motorcycles share the road in warm weather, and should watch for them carefully. On the other hand, motorcyclists have a responsibility to take appropriate safety measures at all times such as using headlights, driving defensively and being prepared to brake at a moment's notice.

When we work together to keep roadways for all vehicles, tragedies like the two motorcycle accident deaths Quincy recently experienced can be minimized. Less deaths on the road means less litigation and less need for a personal injury lawyer. Let's make National Distracted Driving Awareness Month a year-round celebration.

Source:  Quincy Herald-Whig, "Safety urged as motorcyclists come out of winter hibernation" Don O'Brien, Apr. 01, 2014

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