JEFFERSON TWP., Pa. - A violent motorcycle accident in Berks County claimed the life of the driver and left his passenger fighting for her life.
The crash happened just before midnight Monday on Route 183 in Jefferson Township.
Daniel Leffew, 44, died from blunt force trauma to his head and chest, and Tracy Carter, 31, was last listed in critical condition, said officials.
Both riders are from Minersville, Schuylkill Co., and both were wearing helmets.
Their motorcycle crossed over the double line, went over an embankment and through the trees and brush before coming to a stop, said police.
According to PennDOT, there were 181 motorcycle fatalities across the state in 2013. Now, with the weather getting warmer, police and motorcycle enthusiasts are stressing safety.
"We tell our drivers to scan ahead, look for other potential roadway users, pedestrians and other vehicles," said Ofc. Dale Trythall, Reading Police Dept.
Trythall is part of the Blue Knights motorcycle club, and for the past 23 years he has been teaching PennDOT's motorcycle safety program. He trains drivers and teaches them to wear the proper protective gear and always be on alert.
"We need to be more aware of our surroundings because those people that drive cars may not be licensed on a motorcycle and they really don't know what to look for," said Trythall.
Long-time riders, like Frank Young at Classic Harley-Davidson in Bern Township, said your speed needs to match your skill level, and it's more dangerous to ride at night.
"You need to be able to see what's in front of you and to react to any situations that might happen, I mean especially up there on 183 where this accident happened," said Young.
All riders, no matter their skill level, are encouraged to take the safety training course. It's free to all Pennsylvania residents.
Allentown, PA 18102