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Motorcycle Safety

Be an active rider. Be visible, easy to notice and obvious.


  • The average age of a motorcycle owner is 46. Motorcycle fatalities are highest for individuals ages 21 to 25.
  • More than 4,300 motorcyclists died in crashes in the United States in 2013.
  • In 2013, Missouri recorded 98 fatal motorcycle crashes, 2,065 personal injury crashes, 104 deaths and 2,404 individuals were injured as a result of motorcycle accidents.
  • When it comes to motorcycle-related deaths, 91 percent of motorcyclist deaths are male while 61 percentage of motorcycle passenger deaths are female.
  • Motorcycle fatalities are highest between May and September and during weekends after 6 p.m.
  • The blood alcohol consumption level was at or above 0.08 for 28 percent of fatally injured motorcycle drivers.
  • Wearing a helmet decreases the chance of dying in a crash by 37 percent. Riders without helmets are three times more likely to sustain a traumatic brain injury in a crash.
  • Missouri has a universal helmet law that requires all motorcycle riders, including the passenger, to wear a helmet.

Safety Tips

  • Be licensed and informed.
  • S.E.E. when on the road: Search, Evaluate and Execute.
  • Have a safe attitude and mindset before starting the motorcycle.
  • Ensure working lights on all areas of the motorcycle.
  • Use reflective equipment.
  • Buy a bike with an anti-lock brake system (ABS).
  • Avoid riding in wet, rainy, slippery, icy, snowy, foggy and windy conditions.
  • Avoid riding when the temperature is less than 40F.
  • Dress appropriately. Wear a helmet with a face shield, gloves, jacket, pants and boots.

Road Rules

  • Ride sober.
  • Make yourself visible to all drivers on the road at all times.
  • Wear your helmet at all times.
  • Look forward, left, right, and backward using the mirrors.
  • Share the road.
  • Be aware of surroundings.
  • Use your signals before making lane changes.
  • Check all directions before changing lanes.
  • Consider the differences between the safety features on a car or truck and the safety features on a motorcycle. Most of what comes standard on best-selling vehicles is missing on motorcycles, such as: airbags, seat belt locking mechanism, back-up camera, extended bumper, doors, crumple zone and a roof.



Injury Prevention

For more information, please call MU Health Care’s injury prevention outreach program at 573-884-6381.

Nurses After Hours Contact

Nurses are available for after-hours health questions by calling Health Connect at 573-884-2401.