Bikers versus drivers

Survey finds diverging views in the Nutmeg State

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, Apr. 23, 2008
Motorcyclists and drivers in Connecticut don’t really like each other very much, says a new survey conducted for insurance company Allstate.

An online poll conducted by Directive Analytics on Allstate’s behalf found that one in four drivers would ban bikers from highways and parkways while nearly half said motorcyclists should not be allowed to ride in poor weather.

Even further, one in five say motorcycles cause more accidents than other vehicles, mainly because they feel bikers are more reckless.

Motorcyclists’ views on drivers weren’t too favorable either.

Nearly 80 per cent of bikers surveyed think they are safer than car drivers because drivers are careless and don’t pay enough attention to their surroundings. Many also say that drivers are aggressive and impatient, often tailgating or cutting off riders.

“Whether we prefer four wheels or two, we have preconceived notions, and perhaps even strong opinions about other drivers – but these opinions should never get the better of us while we are in our vehicles,” says Andrea Short, Allstate field project manager. “Particularly now as the warmer weather approaches and heavy traffic re-emerges, all drivers should be careful and cognizant of fellow drivers at all times so we may share the roadways safely this spring season.”

While the results of this survey may suggest drivers and motorcyclists in the Nutmeg State have very polarized opinions, many motorcyclists are also wary about other riders.

Half of bikers think motorcycles are dangerous. Three out of four drivers say that they would not let their children ride a motorcycle, while one out of three motorcyclists share that opinion.

These results may suggest that better motorcycle education is needed. While most bikers say they are safer than drivers, one in three never received motorcycle safety training.

As well, thirteen per cent of bikers say they do not have motorcycle insurance despite mandatory insurance laws in Connecticut. Of those who did not have insurance, a majority say they don’t ride often enough to bother.

“To ensure everyone keeps an eye on safety, we recommend that all drivers know the basics of sharing the road with motorcycles,” says Short. “But even with the best preparation, accidents do occur. Purchasing motorcycle insurance can help protect you and your family’s way of life – not just for today, but down the road as well.”