MERCED COUNTY, California. (KSEE) – According to the California Highway Patrol, there were 34 injury crashes and seven fatal crashes involving motorcycles in Merced in 2019.
“We get a pretty significant amount of collisions in this area,” said CHP officer Eric Zuniga.
As the weather gets warmer and more motorcyclists take to the state routes, CHP Merced is going to increase the number of officers they have patrolling on State Routes 59 and 140.
“We’re out there more, so people are going to slow down quite a bit… Obviously, speed has a lot of factors,” Zuniga said.
The California Office of Traffic Safety is providing CHP Merced with additional funding through a grant titled “Get Educated and Ride Safe III.”
Officer Zuniga says CHP will be hosting more education outreach events and courses for motorcyclists as COVID-19 restrictions ease.
He said the majority of fatal crashes involve motorcyclists who don’t wear helmets.
“You can always fix an arm but it’s very hard to repair someone’s head or brain. It’s like wearing a seatbelt – it’s not 100%, it’s not going to save you 100% of the time, but it gives you a high probability that you’re going to survive a collision,” he said.
The operation is going to start on May 21.