Highway Safety Program Guideline No. 3
(November 2006) | PDF version for print
Each State, in cooperation with its political subdivisions and tribal governments and other parties as appropriate, should develop and implement a comprehensive highway safety program, reflective of State demographics, to achieve a significant reduction in traffic crashes, fatalities, and injuries on public roads. The highway safety program should include a comprehensive motorcycle safety program that aims to reduce motorcycle crashes and related deaths and injuries. Each comprehensive State motorcycle safety program should address the use of helmets (meeting Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 218) and other protective gear, proper licensing, impaired riding, rider training, conspicuity, and motorist awareness. This guideline describes the components that a State motorcycle safety program should include and the criteria that the program components should meet.
I. PROGRAM MANAGEMENT
Each State should have centralized program planning, implementation and coordination to identify the nature and extent of its motorcycle safety problems, to establish goals and objectives for the State's motorcycle safety program and to implement projects to reach the goals and objectives. State motorcycle safety plans should:
II. MOTORCYCLE PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT
Each State is encouraged to have and enforce a mandatory all-rider motorcycle helmet use law. In addition, each State should encourage motorcycle operators and passengers to use the following protective equipment through an aggressive communication campaign:
Additionally, each passenger should have a seat and footrest.
III. MOTORCYCLE OPERATOR LICENSING
States should require every person who operates a motorcycle on public roadways to pass an examination designed especially for motorcycle operation and to hold a license endorsement specifically authorizing motorcycle operation. Each State should have a motorcycle licensing system that requires:
IV. MOTORCYCLE RIDER EDUCATION AND TRAINING
Safe motorcycle operation requires specialized training by qualified instructors. Each State should establish a State Motorcycle Rider Education Program that has:
V. MOTORCYCLE OPERATION UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF ALCOHOL OR OTHER DRUGS
Each State should ensure that programs addressing impaired driving include an impaired motorcyclist component. The following programs should be used to reach impaired motorcyclists:
VI. LEGISLATION AND REGULATIONS
Each State should enact and enforce motorcycle-related traffic laws and regulations. As part of a comprehensive motorcycle safety program each State is encouraged to have and enforce a law that requires all riders to use motorcycle helmets compliant with the Federal helmet standard. Specific policies should be developed to encourage coordination with appropriate public and private agencies in the development of regulations and laws to promote motorcycle safety.
VII. LAW ENFORCEMENT
Each State should ensure that State and community motorcycle safety programs include a law enforcement component. Each State should emphasize strongly the role played by law enforcement personnel in motorcycle safety. Essential components of that role include:
VIII. HIGHWAY ENGINEERING
Traffic engineering is a critical element of any crash reduction program. This is true not only for the development of programs to reduce an existing crash problem, but also to design transportation facilities that provide for the safe movement of motorcyclists and all other motor vehicles.
The needs of motorcyclists must always be considered. Therefore, each State should ensure that State and community motorcycle safety programs include a traffic engineering component that is coordinated with enforcement and educational efforts. This engineering component should improve the safety of motorcyclists through the design, construction, operation and maintenance of engineering measures. These measures may include, but should not be limited to:
IX. MOTORCYCLE RIDER CONSPICUITY AND MOTORIST AWARENESS PROGRAMS
State motorcycle safety programs, communication campaigns, and State motor vehicle operator manuals should emphasize the issues of rider conspicuity and motorist awareness of motorcycles. These programs should address:
X. COMMUNICATION PROGRAM
States should develop and implement communications strategies directed at specific high-risk populations as identified by data. Communications should highlight and support specific policy and progress underway in the States and communities and communication programs and materials should be culturally relevant, multilingual as necessary, and appropriate to the audience. States should enlist the support of a variety of media, including mass media, to improve public awareness of motorcycle crash problems and programs directed at preventing them. States should:
XI. PROGRAM EVALUATION AND DATA
Both problem identification and continual evaluation require effective record keeping by State and local government. The State should identify the frequency and types of motorcycle crashes. After problem identification is complete, the State should identify appropriate countermeasures. The State should promote effective evaluation by: