As the weather turns warmer, motorcycle riding season also begins. Many of us count down the last days of winter just itching to fire up our bikes and go for a ride. While you’re making those final mechanical adjustments and dusting off your riding gear, you might also want to consider new ways to keep yourself safe. In 2013 alone, 4,668 people died in motorcycle crashes and 88,000 were injured.
Meet Louisville-Based Company: GearBrakeLooking for ways to improve safety and visibility for motorcyclists, two Louisville-based motorcycle enthusiasts have recently started a safety-focused business named GearBrake.
Inspired by their own years of close calls and minor wrecks, the entrepreneurs evaluated research by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) showing that flashing brake lights improve reaction times by 50 percent compared to standard lights.Further data revealed that 90 percent of all rear-end wrecks can be prevented with an extra one second of warning time — and 29 percent of all wrecks are rear-end collisions. Motorcycles can almost stop completely without lighting the brake lights by either downshifting or engine braking. All this information led GearBrake’s founders to develop their first product, an advanced brake light module that connects to the wiring of a motorcycle’s rear brake and flashes with deceleration, engine braking, hand braking or foot braking. The easy-to-install module works on nearly all 12-volt LED and incandescent bulbs. The patent-pending rear brake product is currently sold for $69.95 on the company’s website and through Amazon. The founders would like to see their light becoming as standard on motorcycles as the rear windshield light is on cars and pickup trucks. To that end, they intend to seek an endorsement from the NHTSA. For those motorcycle owners who don’t feel comfortable altering their wiring themselves, the module is available from some manufacturers as a custom feature. For example, Janus, a manufacturer of retro-style cycles, has agreed to add the module as an upgrade on its bikes.
Additional Products In the WorksThe company is also working on a wireless light that flashes on a motorcyclist’s helmet or clothing, and would like to design a product that increases visibility overall at the front of a bike.
Motorcycles are by their nature less crashworthy than closed vehicles and less visible to other drivers. Do what you can to keep yourself safe.If you have any questions about this topic or if you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, you are invited to contact the Johnson Law Firm for a free, no-obligation, confidential consultation.