MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A report released by the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Thursday shows fatal accidents involving motorcycles are up 30 percent from this time last year.
The report said 22 motorcyclists have been killed on Minnesota roads so far in 2011, compared to 17 at this time last year.
In 2010 there were a total of 45 deaths, which was a 15 percent drop from 53 in 2009. There were 74 deaths in 2008, which was a 24-year high for riders killed.
The DPS reports nine of the 22 deaths this year have been this month, including four over July 20-21. There were seven fatalities in June and five in May. Twenty of the 22 deaths were the motorcycle drivers and two were passengers. Only five of the 22 victims were wearing helmets.
Thirteen of the 22 crashes also happened outside the seven county Twin Cities area. DPS is reminding those who ride motorcycles to use extra caution when out on the road and wear protective gear, especially helmets.