If you are a motorcycle enthusiast, you also know that it can be a dangerous hobby. You have heard all the safety pointers about wearing protective clothing and being a defensive driver. But you may also be wondering what the most dangerous places are to drive a motorcycle. If you have spent a lot of time driving around the United States, you know that traffic and road conditions are different wherever you go. So, what are the states where motorcyclists need to be most on their guard?

1. Florida

Florida has a high rate of motorcycle deaths every year, and statistics show that those deaths are climbing. It is necessary to consider that there are more motorcyclists on the road in Florida than in many other states, given its pleasant weather year-round and its high traffic rate. But there is a significantly higher population that rides motorcycles regularly in Florida. What is more, a disproportionate number of motorcyclists in the state do not wear the proper protective gear while they are on the road.

2. California

Though the number of motorcycle fatalities has fallen in the state in recent years, California has the second highest number in the United States. However, state lawmakers have been pushing for changes to make the streets safer for motorcyclists. One of these laws, referred to as the Splitting Lane law, forbids motorcyclists from passing other vehicles or weaving through traffic, even traffic that is moving in the same direction.

3. Texas

Texas has the third highest number of motorcycle deaths in the country each year. This rate has increased only slightly in recent years. In comparison to other states in the country, however, it continues to be extremely high. Like Florida, many parts of Texas enjoy pleasant weather year-round. The state also has a high number of motorcyclists, which increases the statistical likelihood of a fatal accident on the road.

4. North Carolina

North Carolina has a higher-than-average number of motorcycle enthusiasts, so it makes sense that there would also be a higher death rate related to motorcycles. However, considering that North Carolina is much smaller than California or Texas, the rate is fairly serious.

While these four states lead the country in the number of motorcycle-related deaths, other states have raised concern based purely on the rate of increase in fatalities. Some of these states do not have a long warm season or a significant motorcycle-riding population, so there may be other factors at play.

The states that experienced a significant climb in motorcycle deaths in recent years include South Carolina, Ohio, New York, Illinois, and Michigan. Michigan, a state that does not enjoy fair weather for much of the year, was up as much as 23 percent. Meanwhile, South Carolina was up an astounding 53 percent.

These statistics highlight the need for motorcyclists to practice the basic skills and rules of riding motorcycles. For one, it is recommended all motorcyclists should take regular refresher courses in driving defensively. This is one of the best ways to keep yourself safe on the road as a motorcyclist.

Of course, it goes without saying that you should always wear all your necessary protective gear. This includes a jacket, gloves, and helmet. If you are driving in a place where other drivers unlikely to be aware of motorcyclists, take particular care and stay vigilant on the road.

Finally, you should always follow the state laws concerning motorcycle safety and road safety. If you are in a state with special laws for motorcyclists, such as California, make sure to familiarize yourself with them before hitting the road. It is one of the best ways to keep yourself safe.