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From the Great Smoky mountains to the Outer Bank coast, North Carolina bikers enjoy the open air and thrill of riding a motorcycle. However, motorcyclists are extremely vulnerable road users.  Always look twice for motorcyclists.





A lone motorbike rider on the expressway


Per vehicle mile traveled in 2012, motorcyclists were more than 26 times more likely than passenger car occupants to die in a motor vehicle crash (NHTSA).
Bike Safe North Carolina

Want to ride learn how to ride like a pro? BikeSafe NC offers free Rider Skills Days across the state. The training including skill assessment, classroom-based information and on-road ride-outs.

In 2015, 163 motorcyclists were killed and another 3,119 were injured on North Carolina roads (NCDOT).



North Carolina law requires all operators and passengers of motorcycles and mopeds to wear a DOT certified helmet. In 2011, an estimated 190 – 226 traumatic brain injury hospitalizations were prevented because of North Carolina’s universal helmet law (Naumann, Marshall, Proescholdbell, Austin, and Creppage, 2015).

Motorcycle helmets saved 1,669 lives in 2014 (NHTSA).
Protect yourself with the right gear
Motorcycle Helmet Icon
  • Your DOT-certified helmet should grip your cheeks, your jaw, and the top and sides of your head.
  • Don’t buy a used helmet. There’s no way of knowing if a helmet was involved in a crash, which can compromise its quality and overall safety
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Eye Protection
  • Wear well-ventilated goggles, glasses with safety lenses, or a helmet equipped with a face shield to protect you from insects, dirt, and wind.
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  • Non-slip durable gloves help to grip your controls and keep air out of your sleeves. Firmly padded gloves can help protect your hands if you are involved in a crash.
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  • Wear a padded or reinforced jacket to provide some protection from abrasion in the event of a spill or crash. Always wear fitted long sleeves and long pants to keep from getting anything snagged on your motorcycle. Wear something brightly colored and/or reflective on your upper body.
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  • Tennis shoes, sandals, or cowboy boots don’t cut it. Choose a motorcycle boot with a stiff rubber sole, ankle coverage, and tough material to protect your from flying debris or injury during a crash. Avoid dangling laces.
Always Ride Safe
Never Ride Under the Influence Icon
Never ride under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

In 2012, 30% of motorcyclists killed on North Carolina roads were riding with a BAC over the legal limit (NHTSA).

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Stick to the speed limit.

In 2013, 34% of all motorcyclists killed in the United States were speeding (NHTSA).


Naumann, R. B., Marshall, S. W., Proescholdbell, S. K., Austin, A., & Creppage, K. (2015). Impact of north carolina’s motorcycle helmet law on hospital admissions and charges for care of traumatic brain injuries. North Carolina Medical Journal, 76(2), 70.

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