Goals & Strategies in Florida's Motorcycle Safety Plan
Last month, in the wake of several Panama City motorcycle accidents, we discussed the Florida Department of Transportation's Motorcycle Strategic Safety Plan ("MSSP"). As we noted, the 2009 study supplemented a broader look a traffic safety priorities in the state with a specific examination of motorcycle accidents. In our first post about the study, we focused on the accident statistics and risk factors detailed in the plan. While that post focused on looking at the past, this entry will focus on the future, examining the goals and strategies set forth in the study.
Motorcycle Safety: Goals and Strategies
Overall, the MSSP sought to achieve the overarching goal of improving motorcycle safety in Florida and reducing the number of crashes, serious injuries, and fatalities starting with the 2009 publication date. An initial sub-goal focused on collecting and analyzing data, both for the past and going forward, to inform decision-making. Along a similar vein, the study also set forth a planning objective to continue the work begun in the MSSP through centralized and coordinated program planning.
Moving beyond goals focused on continuing the work of the MSSP, the study identified a number of focus areas, setting forth both goals and strategies for each action category. In brief, the focus points of the plan included:
- Personal Protective Gear - The plan suggests personal protective gear can both reduce injuries and promote rider visibility. Steps include communication, education, and developing partnerships with sponsors and trainers to lead by example.
- Licensing - With a goal of ensuring all riders have the proper endorsement, the study suggests strategies such as improved training, distributing information to owners at various points, evaluating testing programs, and considering an initial restricted licensure period for new riders.
- Education & Training - The MMSP sets a goal of providing adequate training to new and experienced riders. Strategies for this goal include increasing the availability of training programs, promoting further training for experienced motorcycle riders, communicating the benefits of training, overseeing training programs to ensure they serve safety goals,
- Impairment & Speeding - Seeking to reduce the number of crashes due to speeding and alcohol/drug impairment, the plan recommends expanding programs currently aimed at drivers to include motorcycle riders, studying trends to improve effective funding allocation, and developing partnerships aimed at safe riding habits.
- Awareness & Conspicuity - Looking beyond riders, the MSSP sets a goal of increasing motorcycle visibility and generally improving driver awareness of motorcycles. Strategies for this element include educating drivers on road-sharing responsibilities, promoting technology and equipment aimed at improving visibility, and developing a comprehensive statewide plan to ensure efforts are coordinated and avoid costly duplication.
- Additional Goals - While the above goals focus on the general public, the study also sets forth goals and strategies involving legislative/regulatory efforts, law enforcement and emergency service providers, roadway planning, and overall communication strategies.
Our Firm's Commitment
At The Pittman Firm, we believe in prevention first. We applaud the effort of the state to confront the problem of motorcycle accidents and improve the safety of our roadways for everyone. We hope the goals and strategies set forth in the 2009 MSSP continue to translate into action aimed at preventing crashes and saving lives. We are also committed to advocating for innocent riders injured in motorcycle accidents and for helping families who've lost loved ones in motorcycle crashes. Money damages cannot undo a tragedy, but they are often vital to helping victims recover. Moreover, civil suits reiterate the message that carelessness that risks the safety of motorcycle riders is not acceptable. Please call our experienced Panama City motorcycle accident lawyer to arrange a free consultation.