OSEA Safety Blog

National Ride to Work Day

Tuesday, June 21, 2022 Jade Salzman

National Ride to Work Day

Ride to work day is celebrated the third Monday in June each year. Ride to work day is a day to celebrate the joys of motorcycle riding. The history of ride to work day dates to the late 1980s, early 1990s. It was inspired by a marketing campaign “Work to Ride – Ride to Work” by the Aero Design and Manufacturing Company. In 1992, Fred Rau wrote an editorial calling for national ride to work day. July 22nd, 1992, for the first ride to work day and the third Wednesday in July continued to be the day of celebration for ride to work day until 2008.

In 2000, a non-profit organization was created, Ride to Work, due to how much the event grew! Ride to Work was formed to help organize and promote Ride to Work Day. This group held its first event in July 2001. In 2008, the event date was changed from the third Wednesday in July to the third Monday in June. This change was made to accommodate riders world-wide climatically better, which gave more riders an opportunity to participate.

Ride to Work has four goals for Ride to Work Day which are:

  • To show the public and politicians the number of motorcyclists there are
  • Demonstrate motorcyclists are from all occupations and all walks of life
  • Demonstrate that motorcyclists can reduce traffic congestion in large cities
  • Demonstrate that motorcycles are for transportation as well as recreation

Not only is Ride to Work day to celebrate the joys of motorcycle riding but also to educate motorcyclists and drivers to make riding safer. Only 18 states and the District of Columbia have universal helmet laws, and 29 states have laws covering riders under the age of 18. The craziest part of all is that three states (Illinois, Iowa, and New Hampshire) do not have any helmet requirements. According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in 2015, helmets saved 1,772 motorcyclists’ but predictions show that 740 more lives could have been saved if all motorcyclists wore helmets. States without universal helmet laws, 58 percent of motorcyclists killed in 2015 were not wearing helmets which is compared to 8 percent in States with universal helmet laws.

Helmets are not the only way to safely ride motorcycles, avoiding alcohol and drugs is another key component to safe motorcycle riding. 42 percent of riders who died in single-vehicle crashes in 2015 were alcohol-impaired. The highest percentage of alcohol impaired drivers are motorcyclists.

This is just starching the surface of National Ride to Work Day! For more information or how to get involved visit https://www.ridetowork.org/.

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