Considerable evidence exists that inadequate visibility and conspicuity of motorcycles and their riders are contributing accident factors. Other than conspicuity (i.e. a measure of how soon a driver sees and reacts to an object), other important dimensions of visibility are recognizability and localizability. Passive devices (reflective motorcycle-rider surfaces), such as fluorescent red, orange, yellow, or yellow green colored materials are optimum during the day. At night, retroreflective sheeting or fabric as a trim to outline shape or as a full-area covering is recommended. The safety helmet and upper torso clothing (which can be reversible) are the prime areas for improving visibility. Motorcycle treatments and special panels/signs are less effective and less desirable in terms of durability and aesthetics, although reflective tires and reflectorization of registration plates are advantageous. Passive devices to enhance visibility are cost-effective from both a benefit-cost standpoint and as a form of low-cost insurance against unknown, uncontrolled risks.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Conference held in Washington, D.C., 18-23 May 1980. Also published in HS-029 702, International Motorcycle Safety Conference Proceedings. Volume 3, p 1107-28.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Motorcycle Safety Foundation

    780 Elkridge Landing Road
    Linthicum, MD  United States  21090
  • Authors:
    • Vanstrum, R C
    • Austin, R L
  • Publication Date: 1980

Media Info

  • Features: References;
  • Pagination: 22 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00390513
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
  • Report/Paper Numbers: HS-029 709
  • Files: HSL, USDOT
  • Created Date: Nov 30 1984 12:00AM