Principal Investigator: Les Becker
Sponsor: Department of Transportation (DOT)
(4/1/2001 - 10/31/2001) Proposal Abstract
Motorcycle crashes contribute significantly to the large number of injuries and fatalities occurring on the roadways. Motorcyclist fatalities accounted for six percent of total traffic fatalities in 1999; however, motorcycles composed less than 2 percent of all registered vehicles and only .4 percent of all vehicle miles traveled.
Alcohol continues to play a significant role in motorcycle crashes. Over the past ten years, the number of alcohol-related fatalities for both passenger car operators and motorcycle operators have fallen; however, motorcycle operators continue to have a higher involvement. According to the 1999 Fatality Analysis Reporting System, motorcycle operators involved in fatal crashes had higher intoxication rates, with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .10 grams per deciliter or greater, than any other type of motor vehicle drivers. Almost half of the motorcycle operators who died in single vehicle crashes were intoxicated.
The objective of this project is to assess motorcyclists' attitudes and beliefs regarding drinking and riding in order to gain input on their ideas of the most effective methods of reducing impaired motorcycle riding, the resulting crashes, injuries, and fatalities. To meet this objective, a total of 20 focus groups (8 to 10 participants in each focus group) will be conducted in five separate locations. NHTSA will use the project's results to develop effective programmatic approaches addressing the issues associated with impaired riding.