Ask A Trooper

Sgt. Jesse Grabow

Question: Now that motorcycle season is here can you talk about motorcycle operators must “wear” eye protection. Windshields haven’t been considered legal eye protection for many years.

Answer: You are correct. No person shall operate a motorcycle without wearing an eye-protective device.

No person under the age of 18 shall operate or ride a motorcycle on the streets and highways of this state without wearing protective headgear that complies with standards established by the commissioner of public safety.

Last year was the worst for motorcycle fatalities since 1985, with 82 deaths. 

Too many people left for a good time on a motorcycle ride and never made it home to their loved ones.

Drivers, look twice for motorcycles, especially when changing lanes and driving through intersections. Motorcycles are harder to see in traffic and their distance and speed are difficult to judge due to their smaller size.


• Drive at safe speeds.

• Give riders room.

• Always signal your intentions before changing lanes or merging with traffic.

• Put away any distractions.

Riders, wear full protective gear, including a helmet. It can make a difference between life and death.  Two-thirds of riders killed in 2022 were not wearing a helmet. Make sure your gear is “high-viz” to help you stand out in traffic.

Other things that can save your life:

• Ride as though other drivers don’t see you. Don’t ever assume another driver knows you’re there.

• Never ride impaired or distracted.

• Use turn signals at every lane change or turn.

• Ride at safe speeds and maintain a safe following distance.

A portion of state statutes were used with permission from the Office of the Revisor of Statutes. If you have any questions concerning traffic related laws or issues in Minnesota, send your questions to Trp. Jesse Grabow – Minnesota State Patrol at 1000 Highway 10 West, Detroit Lakes, MN 56501-2205.  (You can follow him on Twitter @MSPPIO_NW or reach him at,