September 20, 2019
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Riding Safer In New England, Shorter Season Contributes

SEATTLE – The warmer the climate and the longer the riding season, the higher the rate of motorcycle fatalities. That’s the big conclusion derived from 2017 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration statistics just crunched by the insurance comparison website QuoteWizard.

Mississippi had the highest fatality rate with a 14.22 per 10,000 registered motorcycles. It was followed by Texas (13.44), South Carolina (12.27), Florida (10.06) and Arizona (9.94).

The first state in the northeast to show up in the ranking was Connecticut. It came in 19th place with 6.32 fatalities per 10,000 registered motorcycles.

Bikes on Route 219 in New Hartford, CT

New Jersey ranked 26th (5.43), with Maine finishing 28th (5.05), Vermont in the 34th (4.20) spot and New York at 38th (3.70)

Three of the six New England states finished in the nether reaches of the list – Rhode Island at 40th (3.56), Massachusetts at 42nd (3.02) and New Hampshire at 47th (1.90).

The state with the lowest fatality rate and in 50th place was Montana (.75).

“A key pattern we found in fatality rates among states is weather. Colder, more northern states like Alaska and New Hampshire have low fatality rates, while warmer, more southern states like Mississippi and Texas had the highest rates,” QuoteWizard reported.

“When you consider that motorcycle riders in Alaska can only ride a few months out of the year, compared to Texas where you can ride all year long, that difference in rideable seasons has a huge impact on the number of fatalities.”

QuoteWizard is a subsidiary of LendingTree.

About Bud Wilkinson

An award-winning print and broadcast journalist, Bud Wilkinson writes the "RIDE-CT" motorcycle column and the "My Ride" vintage car feature for the "Republican-American" newspaper in Waterbury, CT. He studied journalism at Ohio Wesleyan University where he received a B.A. degree. He currently rides a 1987 BMW R 80 RT and a 2014 Triumph Bonneville.

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