COLUMBUS — Ohio Traffic Safety Office (OTSO) Director Felice Moretti announced Tuesday Motorcycle Ohio, the state’s motorcycle training and safety program, will now operate as a division of OTSO.
“The training programs under Motorcycle Ohio are a great fit with the existing programs under OTSO, and motorcycle operators in Ohio won’t notice anything different after this transition,” said Moretti. “The change will be seamless as both OTSO and Motorcycle Ohio work together with a renewed focus on safety to keep riders – and all motorists – safe on Ohio’s roadways.”
Motorcycle Ohio had previously been under OTSO until 2011, when it moved under the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV). Both OTSO and the BMV are divisions with the Ohio Department of Public Safety.
For over 30 years, Motorcycle Ohio has provided Ohio’s riders the opportunity to improve their skills and make the roadways safer for all motorists. Motorcycle Ohio offers several courses for new, intermediate, and more advanced riders. The goal is to help Ohioans learn how to ride a motorcycle safely and engage in a fun, rewarding hobby. The program also oversees the “Saved By The Helmet” club, which increases awareness about the life-saving value of motorcycle helmets by recognizing individuals who survive serious crashes while wearing a helmet.
Ohio has over 498,000 registered motorcycles, 600,000 endorsed riders, and issues 40,000 motorcycle permits per year. This makes Ohio the fifth largest state in the union for ridership. In 2021, there were 215 motorcycle fatalities in Ohio, with over 2,600 injury crashes occurring on our roadways. Wearing proper riding gear, along with taking a rider education class are ways that motorcyclists can increase their chances of surviving a crash.
OTSO’s mission is to save lives and reduce injuries on Ohio’s roads through leadership and partnering efforts with others interested in traffic safety, utilizing the most innovative and efficient methods possible of managing state and federal resources. Last year, OTSO awarded over $31 million in grants to be used for projects such as traffic safety education, enforcement, and engineering.