Keeping safe on the roads as thousands of motorcycles fill Colum - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Keeping safe on the roads as thousands of motorcycles fill Columbus roadways

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -

Statistics show motorcycle versus car crashes kill more than 4,500 motorcyclists each year. With roughly 1,600 motorcycles rolling into the Fountain City this weekend, driving instructors say it's best to look at hitting the roadways like attending a social event.

"One of the biggest social events we have in our life everyday is sharing the roadway with other people in a vehicle or on a vehicle," explains Al Barber, president of Barber's Driving School.

Barber tells us the responsibility of safely sharing the road lies in the hands of the driver of the car and motorcycle.

"Whether you're driving a motor vehicle, such as a van, or truck or passenger vehicle or a motorcycle you have to respect time and space management," he adds.

Barber suggests checking your mirrors and blind spots by looking in front of you, behind you and to the side before switching lanes and allowing a three to four second following distance for either motor vehicle. All suggestions those in the HOG community say will come in handy as bikers ride in groups for the rally.

Carson Bayer, Director of Marketing and Events for Chattahoochee Harley-Davidson, explains "we have a bunch of different group rides.Some rides that will contain a couple hundred bikes. So if you see one motorcycle, there's probably more coming."

Bayer adds while riding, she's seen bikers lay down their bikes and even driver's hit motorcyclists and keep going, but she hopes these tips will keep any of those things from happening this weekend.

"When you are driving or when you are riding, just be aware of your surroundings and you shouldn't have any problems other than that," says Bayer.

The Georgia HOG rally kicked Thursday, September 18 at Chattahoochee Harley-Davidson and will be in town until Saturday afternoon. For a complete list of rally events, head to: http://www.gastatehogrally.com/detail.html

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