JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Two motorcyclists were killed in separate crashes on Sunday, including a man who drove off a road and struck a tree, according to the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office.
Hunter Pardee died Sunday afternoon when his motorcycle went off a curvy section of Riverside Avenue, JSO said. Hours later, another motorcyclist was killed in a crash at the intersection of Beach Boulevard and Desalvo Road after rear-ending a pickup truck. That person has not been identified.
Pardee, 24, was not wearing a helmet, and is the 127th person killed in a traffic crash during 2018, police said. According to Florida law, anyone over the age of 21 are not required to wear one.
Employees at the Mellow Mushroom on the Southside where Pardee worked said he was close with all of his coworkers and will be missed. Loved ones and well-wishers left messages on his Facebook page.
Michael Dobbs, who spent 25 years with the Florida Highway Patrol and 18 years as a motorcycle cop, is the owner of Jacksonville Motorcycle Safety Training. One of Sunday's crashes involved a curve while the other happened at an intersection, both of which he said are dangerous for motorcyclists.
"You (motorcyclists) must evaluate when you're approaching an intersection other cars, pedestrians, signs, animals," Dobbs said.
Over 545,000 motorcycles are registered in Florida -- the second highest state in the nation.
"Drivers need to be aware to look for motorcyclists," Dobbs said. "Look to the left and to the right to see if there is a motorcyclist and your blind spot, and give them the right of way -- let them get past you."
The motorcycle safety course Dobbs teaches is a two-day, 15-hour course at the Regency Square Mall. It provides motorcyclists the endorsement required to obtain a motorcycle license.
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