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MRF Updates

U.S. Department of Transportation Reminds People to ‘Share the Road’

June 03, 2016

WASHINGTON, DC – Though this week marked the end of May’s “Motorcycle Awareness Month” the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Assistant Secretary Greg Winfree reminded everyone to keep an eye out for motorcyclists.

Assistant Secretary Winfree, himself a motorcyclist, was the author of a recent bulletin posted by the Department of Transportation’s Research and Technology office. The bulletin, available by clicking here reminds all road users to share the road and be alert. Though Winfree does mention the recent Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) report, he acknowledges that the numbers showing an increase in motorcyclist fatalities in 2015 are preliminary.

Importantly, Winfree himself makes no mention of a universal helmet law as a solution despite the GHSA’s report repeated insistence. Instead, Winfree points to the importance of having concrete data to help inform and shape critical safety priorities.

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GHSA Report Advocates For Universal Helmet Law…Again

May 25, 2016

WASHINGTON, DC– Last week, the Governor’s Highway Safety Association (GHSA) released its preliminary data and findings regarding motorcycle fatalities in 2015. The GHSA represents the state and territorial highway safety offices that implement programs to address highway safety. Although GHSA’s primary mission is to improve traffic safety, their latest report appears to be more focused on thinly veiled demands for nationwide universal helmet laws despite their failure to provide real data demonstrating the effectiveness of such laws.

While the report highlights that the preliminary data suggests a 10% increase in motorcycle fatalities in 2015, it fails to connect the presence or lack of universal helmet laws to the projected increase. In fact, there are a number of other factors that may explain the projected increase, including the climate, education and experience of the motorists involved, and the inclusion of faulty data in the making of this report.

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Maryland Becomes Second State to Pass Motorcyclist Anti-Profiling Law

May 24, 2016

WASHINGTON, DC – The motorcyclists of Maryland counted a major victory last week when Governor Larry Hogan signed a bill into law that would expressly prohibit the profiling of motorcyclists within the state. At the signing ceremony were members of ABATE of Maryland, the Maryland Confederation of Clubs, and Motorcycle Riders Foundation. The teamwork, cooperation and hard work by these organizations ensured swift passage of the measure.

"The unanimous passage of this legislation through both chambers is a direct result of well thought out strategic positioning, thorough lobbying and a truly unified motorcycle community,” stated Bill “Colt” Kaitz from the Maryland Confederation of Clubs and Co-Founder of the Motorcycle Profiling Project. “We had tremendous support in both chambers and all committees. Our community hopes that this will serve as an example to any state with well documented profiling incidents that with a unified community and intelligent, concentrated effort, this legislation is possible and stands to better the lives of all motorcyclists."

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Motorcycle Riders Foundation Holds Successful Washington, DC Advocacy Day

May 17, 2016

WASHINGTON, DC – Last week over 100 members of the Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF) made the trip to Washington, DC to connect with elected officials from across the country in support of motorcyclists’ rights. Twenty-four states were represented this year and more than 300 meetings with members of Congress and their staff took place over the course of May 10th, 11th, and 12th.

Members of the MRF brought their bikes, as well as their personal stories from back home, to Capitol Hill and discussed issues critical to the 2016 MRF's legislative agenda. Among these included opposing the REFUEL Act; supporting the Motorsports Act, as well as recommendations of the charter for the newly re-established Motorcycle Advisory Council. In addition, legislators heard about updating the definition of a motorcycle, as well as concerns over the profiling of motorcyclists.

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