Officials’ Campaign to Reduce Motorcycle Fatalities in Arizona

Motorcycle Safety

PHOENIX – Increased traffic congestion and a lack of training can be a deadly combination for motorcyclists, therefore state officials urges riders to get instruction and required motorcycle drivers licenses before taking to the roads.

“Training prior to licensing is very important,” said Alberto Gutier, director of the Arizona Governor’s Office of Highway Safety. “There needs to be mutual respect between motorcyclists and (automobile) drivers.”

According to the Arizona Department of Transportation, the state had 157 motorcycle-related fatalities in 2011, up from 99 deaths in 2010. The 2012 total, which isn’t yet available, will exceed 125. The increase in the number of fatalities is the driving force behind the safety training lead by the highway officials.

In her State of the State address, Gov. Jan Brewer of Arizona called for ADOT and Gutier’s office to develop strategies for reducing motorcycle fatalities with an update of the Arizona Strategic Highway Safety Plan. This is a campaign that recommends every driver or motorcyclists to receive formal training.

Arizona requires motorcyclists to obtain special licenses or be endorsed for motorcycle riding on the back of a standard driver’s license. To obtain a motorcycle license, a rider must pass a riding test and written exam, either through the Arizona Motor Vehicle Division or a third-party training center.

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