MONTHLY COLUMN: May is Motorcycle Safety & Awareness Month

Modified: May 14, 2022 10:25am

May 14, 2022

Erie County Clerk Mickey Kearns greets motorcyclists during ABATE of Erie County's 32nd Annual Safety Run and encourages everyone on the streets and highways to share the road safely and look twice for motorcycles.

A time to remind motorists and motorcyclists to safely share the roadways 

Warmer weather has arrived, daylight hours are longer and it is finally spring.  Motorcycle riders across Erie County are tuning up their bikes and getting ready for the riding season on the open road. Motorcycles are inexpensive to purchase, fun to ride and easy to park.  In addition, with gasoline prices at record highs, consumers are looking for more fuel-efficient ways to get around while saving money. In Erie County alone, there are more than 21,000 registered riders who use their motorcycles for commuting, touring and other recreational activities. 

I ask all motorists, especially new drivers, to be alert to the presence of motorcycles and to share the road safely. Motorcyclists often ride to one side of the lane and at times the rider can hide in your vehicle’s blind spot. Always look twice before turning or changing lanes to be sure your path is clear. Allow more following distance for motorcycles -- two or three car lengths is recommended, more if the roads are wet or visibility is poor. 

Riders should follow motorcycle safety protocols: wear protective gear at all times, including a helmet, ride within your skill limits, avoid riding in poor weather conditions, use turn signals, and never ride impaired or distracted. Riders can also benefit from any of the motorcycle safety programs offered for both new riders looking to learn the critical skills needed to ride safely and seasoned riders who want to reinforce safe driving practices. Course graduates may also qualify for insurance premium discounts with some insurers. Class locations and fees can be found at

Before hitting the road this driving season, I remind motorcyclists to visit the Erie County Auto Bureau to get properly licensed and to ‘Renew Local’ when renewing their motorcycle registration which expires annually on April 30th. For more information on motorcycle licensing and registration visit us at or call the Clerk’s Outreach Center at 716-858-8864. 

I urge everyone to use caution when sharing the road this summer. Together, the more we raise awareness and follow the rules of the road, the more everyone is safe. Let’s ride smart, ride safe, and enjoy the season.