Acting Captain Rob Huss
Government and Media Relations
(360) 596-4010 – office
(360) 596-4015 – fax
*** For Immediate Release***
May 10, 2012
Contact: Lieutenant Kandi Patrick
Phone: (509) 682-8103
North Cascade Highway (SR 20) Re-Opens today after Winter Closure
Wenatchee – The gates swung open today opening the North Cascades Highway after the long winter closure. The Washington State Patrol (WSP) and Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) in British Columbia (BC) want to remind drivers to slow down and pay attention to their surroundings on this scenic highway. The WSP partnered with the RCMP after seeing an increase in motorcycle fatalities involving Canadian riders over the last couple of years. Lieutenant Patrick stated “We felt it was critical to reach out to the RCMP to get the word out to all riders to be cautious on this scenic route during the summer months, and added she hopes through media education in Washington and BC they can prevent another tragedy on this highway”.With nice weather upon us and more riders on the road we are reminding riders to slow down on mountain highways and pay attention to the suggested posted speed limit for all curves. The suggested posted speed limit signs in Washington are black and yellow vs. regulatory black and white signs which are the maximum speed limit for a particular road or curve. The difference is how fast you can take the curve – example: if the suggested sign says 35 mile per hour that is the speed you should be taking the curve anything above the suggested speed limit could result in your losing control of your motorcycle.
Speed and impaired driving are the top two reasons for all motorcycle collisions in Washington State. Analysis of collisions tells us that more than half of fatal motorcycle collisions involve a single motorcycle. 40% of the fatalities involved unendorsed riders and the most common cause for fatal collisions are lane errors, speed, driving while impaired, and driver inattention. In the last three years 72% of motorcycle fatal collisions were the fault of the rider.
What can you do to stay safe?
- SLOW DOWN! – Obey suggested speed limit signs
- Don’t drive while intoxicated
- Pay attention to your surroundings
- Wear proper clothing and DOT approved helmets
- Don’t drive beyond your abilities
Ride safe – Be responsible – Your safety depends on your driving!