Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has recently signed a new bill designed to put the spotlight on motorcycle safety. During his preliminary remarks, he noted that the state is home to some 650,000 motorcycle riders. Motorcyclists take advantage of Florida’s warm climate and ride year-round. The safety of the riders has become a priority for the governor’s office.
Three nonprofit groups will administer safety programs
Motorcycle accidents are a continuing problem causing major accidents, high damages, and high injury rates. Governor DeSantis has addressed these concerns by shifting the focus of safety education to three nonprofit groups in the bill known as SB 838. This bill provides a new destination for the $2.50 motorcycle safety education fee previously used by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) to fund a special safety education program.
The DHSMV will be required to select the three groups participating in the program by Oct. 1, 2023. Once the final choices are made, the agency will enter into a five-year contract with each group. Payments for these services will be issued quarterly beginning on October 1st.
An increase in injuries calls for action
Collisions involving motorcyclists on the rise in Florida and as of 2019, they accounted for 11% of all fatal motorcycle accidents in the nation. Combined with other motor vehicular accidents this unfortunate statistic makes Florida one of the top states on the list of vehicular accident fatalities.
Most motorcycle accidents documented in 2019 and 2020 resulted in the report of injuries. Florida was listed as the venue for 9% of all national motorcycle accident injuries, most of which are severe to fatal. Statistics like these are the driving force of Governor Ron DeSantis’s bill for motorcycle safety.