Hawai‘i Police Department
South Hilo Community Policing Section
Lieutenant William Derr
Phone: (808) 961-2350
Given the recent number of fatalities involving motorcycles on Hawai‘i Island roadways, the Hawai‘i Police Department is providing the following motorcycle safety tips.
● Always wear a full face helmet when driving or riding as a passenger on a motorcycle, moped, or ATV.
Make sure you wear a helmet that meets U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 218. Look for the DOT symbol on the outside back of the helmet. Snell and ANSI labels located inside the helmet also show that the helmet meets the standards of those private, non-profit organizations.
● Be visible. Wear brightly colored clothing with reflective material that will make you more visible to other vehicle drivers.
● Wear protective gear. Arms and legs should be covered when riding a motorcycle, ideally by wearing leather or heavy denim providing protection in a crash. Boots or shoes should be high enough to cover your ankles, while gloves allow for a better grip and help protect your hands in the event of a crash.
● Ride defensively. Be mindful that driving a car and riding a motorcycle require different skills and react differently to road conditions. Compared to a car, motorcyclists have a narrow profile on the road and can often be in a vehicle’s blind spot. Both vehicle and motorcycle operators need to be aware of each other on the road and double check before changing lanes, making a turn, or pulling out into traffic.
● Drive sober. Both motorcyclists and car drivers are reminded to drive sober or get pulled over. If you consume any intoxicating substance don’t drive. Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is extremely dangerous.
So far this year, 22 people have been killed on our island roadways, an increase of 69 percent from 13 killed this time last year. Of the 22 deaths, 36 percent have been motorcycle/scooter related with seven motorcyclist fatalities and one operating a motor scooter.
Hawai‘i Island police wants everyone to arrive alive at their destination this weekend and throughout the upcoming holiday season.