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The National Highway Traffic Safety Adminstration (NHSTA) reported that motorcycle accident deaths rose by 5.1 percent , to 4,810 in 2006 . Traffic deaths rose for all age groups , but older riders were affected the most. In the last 10 years , fatalities have risen by 250 percent in the 40-and-older age group.One reason is the increased power of the engines and the size of some of the bikes.Often older riders return to biking with the same skills that were safe 20 years ago. Alcohol also plays a role in motorcycle crashes in all age groups. The report shows that 39 percent of 35-to-39-year-olds killed in a fatal crash had a blood alcohol level of .08 or higher. Does the lack od helmets cause the death rates to rise ? Only 20 states have mandatory helmet laws. Tennessee is one such state. Does a state’s right to regulate safety issues trump the bike riders personal choice and freedom to ride. I would like to hear your comments which I will post on this site. Happy Trails.

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