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In many parts of the country, particularly those with vibrant local economies, automotive 'gridlock' is rapidly becoming an unattractive fact of life. This is due to the greatly increased use of single-occupancy automobiles. Increases in automobile usage cannot be sustained without consequences, and this sentiment is beginning to have some resonance among the general public. An objective analysis of the potential benefits of increased use of motorcycles will reveal that they are an underutilized solution, and that their value as a source of congestion relief is being largely ignored. Motorcycles are a legitimate part of the overall transportation mix, deserving of greater consideration in traffic planning procedures and by those responsible for all kinds of social policy decisions. Our current culture largely considers motorcycles 'toys'. This is an unfortunate hindrance to the status they deserve as a legitimate mode of personal transportation.
The Advantages of Motorcycling:
Integrating motorcycles into the existing transportation infrastructure is a relatively low-cost proposition, particularly compared to light rail, bus, and other 'mass transit' solutions.Gridlock and Traffic Congestion Relief
Motorcycles take far less space than four-wheeled vehicles when traveling on roads or when parked. In addition to having a smaller �footprint� than an automobile, motorcycles are comparatively more nimble and maneuverable, and these attributes also speed traffic flow.Clean
Motorcycles in all traffic conditions produce far less harmful pollutants than cars, SUV�s or buses. They also help preserve the road infrastructure because their lighter weight places less stress on road surfaces.Efficient
Motorcycles can provide gas mileage considerably in excess of that achieved by any other form of powered transport, particularly in stop-and-go traffic situations and at urban speeds.Fun and Healthful
Motorcycles are fun to operate and leave riders alert and energized because of the more direct stimulation of riders� senses.
Higher statistical accident rates for riders are due to a greater incidence of excessive speed or impairment (DUI) among motorcyclists. Motorcycle riders are also younger and less risk-adverse than the general automobile driving population. These factors are not represented among transportation and commuting riders...whose accident rates are similar to the average rates for automobile users.