“Check your bike before each ride” and “Wear all your safety equipment” are two practical pieces of advice in a public service announcement (see below) that features US Secretary of Transportation, Mary E. Peters (served 2006 to 2009 under President George W. Bush), who is also a motorcycle rider.
While she was Secretary of Transportation and in response to the trend of rising motorcycle injuries and fatalities, Peters announced a new federal initiative to improve motorcycle safety.
The initiative focused on:
- more rider education and training
- tougher standards for helmet certification labeling
- law enforcement training
- road designs that consider motorcycle dynamics
Since I have personally ridden coast-to-coast, as well as up, down, and all over North America — a number of times — I am an advocate for wearing helmets. (In fact, helmet use has saved my life.)
However, I am not an advocate for helmet â€œlaws.â€ Hence, I applaud the former Transportation Secretary for attempting to improve the motorcycle fatality rate via training and education, instead of by initiating even more restrictions on American freedoms.
Peters said she is one of the many â€œbaby-boomersâ€ who have recently returned to riding after years of shelving their bikes in lieu of family and careers. In August 2005, she suffered a broken collar bone after a crash on a two-lane highway just north of Tucson, Arizona.