Yellow Signs Aim To Make Motorcycle Riders Safe On Upstate Roads -

Yellow Signs Aim To Make Motorcycle Riders Safe On Upstate Roads

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Kay Nicholls is a mom on a mission, one she couldn't have imagined nearly three years ago.  "It was June 17, 2010," the Greenville mother remembers.  "His last words were 'bye mama, I love you'", she says through tears.  That was the day Nicholls lost her son, Daniel.  The 23 year old, a motorcycle lover, went out to meet friends in Greer and never came home.  "He was killed less than a mile from our house," Nicholls says.

In coping with her pain, Nicholls found a new passion that aims to keep others, like her son, safe on the roads.  "I had to find a new direction," she says.  Now, she heads up the Greenville chapter of the Motorcycle Awareness Alliance.  The group began several years ago in Anderson County, and recently has added chapters in Greenville, Laurens, and Oconee Counties. 

You've probably seen their message popping up in yards, and in front of businesses all over the upstate recently.  The bright yellow signs can't be missed.  They read:  "Look Twice, Save A Life."  "We're purposely using yellow because of the recognition we're trying to bring," says Nicholls.  "People will see that sign and immediately think, oh, what's around me?"

Ronnie Reed, owner of the Watering Hole in Laurens, has two signs outside his business.  A biker himself, he routinely talks to customers about the group's message.  "It's to make people more aware," he says.  "I just want people to know, if you're in a car and you see a motorcycle, wait on them," says Reed.  "Just watch out for us."

Pam Lothridge also has one of the yellow signs in her front yard.  She lets her three year old granddaughter ride on her bike with her.  "People just need to be aware, it's not just adults on the road, there's children riding on these motorcycles also."

The Highway Patrol reports there were 22 motorcycle fatalities in the Upstate in 2011.  That number jumped to 40 deaths in 2012.

Nicholls says the movement for awareness is catching on.  "There's a wave of yellow hitting the upstate," she says.

Though the mission is bittersweet, she's hoping it makes a difference.  "If we can save just one person, wow," she says.  "How many times do get the opportunity to save a life?"

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