May is Motorcycle Awareness Month and the Idaho Transportation Department’s Office of Highway Safety has teamed with local and state agencies for a safety campaign.

There is a need for it: 25 people were killed in motorcycle crashes in Idaho in 2017, according to the Office of Highway Safety. And just since Friday, according to Idaho State Police, three people lost their lives in motorcycle-related crashes in the Gem State.

“Idaho is beautiful this time of year and it makes for a great time to ride,” OHS Grants Officer Cecilia Awusie said in a prepared statement. “As more and more riders are out and about, we need everyone on the roads to be a little more engaged and to watch out for each other.”

Rider safety is something we take very seriously. Please wear your helmets and other protective gear, plan ahead and please don’t ever drink and ride.

ITD offers the following safety tips:

  • Slow down, assess your surroundings, and don’t rush when crossing intersections, entering the roadway from a parking lot or driveway, or turning left. Always give yourself enough time to thoroughly check for motorcyclists.
  • When turning left, ensure there is enough time and space for a motorcyclist to clear the roadway before you initiate the left turn.
  • Don’t follow motorcyclists too closely and allow sufficient braking cushion between your vehicle and the motorcycle in front of you so vehicles have room to come to a complete stop without a collision. A motorcyclist’s brake lights might not always be engaged when a motorcycle decelerates.
  • Always double-check your blind spots when changing lanes or starting to entering or exiting the roadways. Adjust your rear- and side-view mirrors and use them properly.
  • If someone you know drives a motorcycle, tell him or her to always wear a helmet— even if the law doesn’t require it. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, an estimated 740 lives could have been saved in 2015 if all motorcyclists had worn helmets.