Only a fraction of Missouri motorcyclists have had formal training

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COLUMBIA - According the Missouri Motorcycle Safety Program, 4,630 Missourians received training at one of MMSP's 31 certified training locations last year, a 10 percent drop from the roughly 5,000 people who received training in 2013.

Katie Tillitt, who is the training coordinator at Mid-American Harley Davidson of Columbia, said the road can be a dangerous place for both drivers and motorcyclists, especially if they don't have the proper training.

"The training class helps make you aware of the dangers of the road," Tillitt said. "It gives you the skills to be on a motorcycle and be able to react to certain situations while you're on the road."

According to data from the MMSP, there are roughly 176,000 motorcycles registered in Missouri, but just roughly 40,000 people who've received training from the MMSP.

Scott Decker, who is a trainer at Central Missouri Motorcycle Training, said receiving the proper training is critically important in order to stay safe on the roads.

"Motorcycle training is a perishable skill," Decker said. "If you don't exercise quick braking and quick maneuvering you're really not riding to your fullest and safest potential."

With May being Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, the Missouri Department of Transportation is offering five tips to motorcyclists to safe on the roads, they are:

  • Wear a helmet
  • Wear proper gear
  • Do not share a lane
  • Stay sober
  • Receive proper training