Motorcycle safety advocate warns Manitobans to be alert as warm weather extends season

Participants on their bikes at the 2019 Manitoba Motorcycle Ride For Dad.
Participants on their bikes at the 2019 Manitoba Motorcycle Ride For Dad. Mike Koncan / Global News

It’s been a deadly year on Manitoba highways, and that’s not limited to vehicles on four wheels.

According to Manitoba RCMP, there have been 64 vehicle collisions causing 70 deaths in 2020, compared to 50 crashes and 54 deaths at this time last year.

So far, eight motorcyclists have died in Manitoba due to collisions, and that number is likely to go up as the motorcycle season continues.

Read more: Manitoba RCMP clock woman going 230 km/h on motorcycle

Guy Jeannson, a motorcycle safety instructor with the Safe Rider Program, tells Global News motorcyclists are more susceptible to serious injury when involved in crashes.

“Even a slight incident on a motorcycle could cause broken bones or head injuries,” Jeannson said.

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Manitoba’s long-range forecast is calling for a much warmer-than-usual September and October this year.

Meteorologist Dave Phillips says there is still a lot of summer left in the air.

“What we’re going to see this week is almost a return to muscle shirt weather,” said Phillips, forecasting highs up to 25 C, a full nine degrees higher than normal.

Jeannson said the warm weather will undoubtedly extend the weeks that motorcyclists will be on our roads, yet another reason for everyone on the road to be vigilant.

“You’re tuned to looking for cars,” he said. “Motorists have to be aware (of motorcycles)… and as a motorcyclist, you have to make yourself visible and anticipate what the other motorists are doing.”

Jeansson adds that just like with motorists, there are reckless bikers out there. He urges everyone to drive to the conditions of the road in a safe and speed-sensitive manner.