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New law aims to reduce motorcycle accidents

Motorcycles are very popular in Hawaii, and rightfully so. Not only are motorcycles cost-efficient and easier to maintain, they are also a fun way to explore the beautiful landscapes that the state of Hawaii is so famous for. However, traveling by motorcycle is not without added risk, especially now that roadways are often very crowded. Motorcycle accidents have been increasing every year. In an effort to increase safety, a new law was recently passed that may prove beneficial to motorcyclists.

The new law, which went into effect at the start of 2019, allows motorcyclists to ride on the shoulder of some roadways. Advocates of the new legislation say that being allowed to utilize the shoulder of the road can save motorcyclists from being stuck in heavy traffic, which can present significant risks to motorcyclists. In heavy traffic, motorcycles are more likely to be crowded in by larger passenger vehicles. Also, most motorcycles are air-cooled, so being stuck in traffic could cause them to overheat. 

Being able to utilize the shoulder of the road would remedy both of these safety issues, advocates say. However, the law limits what motorcyclists can do. Riders cannot go against the flow of traffic, drive faster than 10 mph and can only use the shoulder if traffic is completely stopped.

With so many vehicles utilizing the same roadways, motorcycle safety is important in Hawaii. Tragically, motorcycle accidents are more likely to result in serious injury or death since riders are completely exposed. Those who have suffered injuries or loss due to negligence in an accident can take legal action. A successful claim may result in financial relief for struggling families.

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