SC motorcycle deaths reach four-decade high of 154 in 2021

GREENVILLE, S.C. — South Carolina reported more deaths on motorcycles in 2021 than any year in the past four decades.

A total of 154 motorcyclists died in crashes, up 9% from the number of deaths reported in 2020, according to crash data reviewed by The Greenville News.

It was the most deaths since 1980, according to the data.

South Carolina law only requires motorcycle drivers under 21 wear helmets, but state troopers said it is one of the key ways to stay safe.

“You must be on the defense at all times and expect the unexpected. You have to expect that someone is going to come in front of you, someone is not looking for a motorcyclist. I think if people do that your chance in being involved in something goes down,” state Highway Patrol Trooper Mitchell Ridgeway said.

Ridgeway said troopers also think more motorcyclists and drivers spent time on the road in 2021 after long shutdowns in the COVID-19 pandemic the year before.

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