Message Monday - Share the road. Bikers' lives ride on it

8-3 bikers livesThe 80th City of Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is set to begin Aug. 7. This 10-day event attracts motorcyclists from all over the country, many of whom will be riding through Iowa on their way to the South Dakota destination. In addition, warmer months always bring more motorcycles out on Iowa roads. Motorists and motorcyclists need to be watching out for each other and sharing the road.

A motorcycle rider’s judgment is critical. In single-vehicle crashes, rider error is the most common cause. If you’re under 18, a basic rider course is required by Iowa law to obtain a motorcycle operator’s license. If you’re just starting out on your motorcycle, taking the basic rider course will help you hone your defensive driving skills and environmental awareness in addition to four fundamental riding skills:

  • Straight-line riding
  • Turning
  • Shifting
  • Stopping

Many collisions and injuries could have been avoided if the motorcycle rider had known when and how to swerve or brake. Even if you’ve been riding for a while, taking a basic rider course can help you expand your defensive driving and street-riding skills.

  • Advanced turning techniques
  • Maximum-braking techniques
  • Swerving

No matter how seasoned of a rider you are, find out where you can enroll in these trainings at Here’s a video “cheat sheet” on how to be successful in the basic rider course -

For 2020, there have been 153 fatalities reported. That is an increase of 13 since last Monday. To see statistics published daily by the Office  of Driver Services, go to the daily fatality report at

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