|Sheryl Boggs and Dora D from SOAR|
“Everyone has someone that they know who rides a motorcycle,” said Dora DiFrancescomarino of SOAR. “Drivers of all vehicles – cars, trucks and motorcycles – are encouraged to be extra alert. Motorcycles are some of the smallest vehicles on the road and we’re calling on drivers of cars and larger vehicles to take extra care to safely share the road. Motorcyclists need to do our part as well by being aware of our surroundings in traffic, wearing protective riding gear and not taking unnecessary risks.”
“Motorcyclists are much more vulnerable than passenger vehicle drivers in the event of a crash. Remember, the only bumpers motorcyclists have are their knees! Research shows that approximately 80 percent of motorcycle crashes injure or kill a motorcycle rider, while only 20 percent of passenger car crashes injure or kill a driver or passenger in their vehicle,” continued DiFrancescomarino, “and in Ottawa, we’ve decided to do something about that!”
For the past two years, SOAR has been actively soliciting grants, funding and in-kind contributions to help promote May is Motorcycle Awareness month. The 2013 campaign resulted signage on 40 billboards, bus backs, decals for vehicles and city street signage across the city to raise awareness. Partners include Ministry of Transportation, Safer Roads Ottawa, Ottawa Safety Council, Ontario Road Riders Association and generous donations of Miller McConnell Signs, Bounder Magazine and Pattison Signs. In addition, Affinity Productions, one of SOAR's partners produced radio and public service You tube videos. Half time announcements where made at the "at home" games of the Ottawa Senators Hockey team. In addition to this, Canadian Tire also promoted May is Motorcycle Awareness month at all service stations across Ontario.
The Society of Ottawa Area Riders (SOAR) was established 20 years ago, primarily to meet with charity riding groups, review event dates and locations in a coordinated effort to avoid conflicting dates for the benefit of all. Today, SOAR has become the “voice of the motorcycle riding community” in Ottawa. The SOAR executive has representatives from charity ride organizers, motorcycle associations and clubs as well as motorcycle businesses and related companies and organizations.
The goal of SOAR is to promote biker awareness, represent local rider interest at the municipal, provincial and federal levels with legislative issues as well as rider training, manufacturer recalls, parking, motorcycle awareness, insurance and rider safety.
SOAR is not a motorcycle riding club. The purpose is to promote a passion for positive and safe riding; be a resource in group riding events and provide information on local charitable and motorcycling events. Look for us at www.ottawasoar.com on Twitter and Facebook at “Society of Ottawa Area Riders (SOAR).”