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Posted 04/20/2023 in Personal Injury by Erik Abrahamson

What Causes the Most Fatalities in Motorcycle Accidents?

What Causes the Most Fatalities in Motorcycle Accidents?

Riding a motorcycle can be a thrilling experience that provides an adrenaline rush similar to other recreational activities such as skiing, surfing, or climbing. But to ride a motorcycle safely, concentration is crucial. Despite the feelings of calm, oneness, and freedom reported by many motorcyclists, it's important to note that riding a motorcycle is more dangerous than driving a car. The fatality and injury rates for motorcyclists are significantly higher than those for drivers of cars. Even careful riders can suffer severe injuries in accidents. To stay safe, it's important to understand the most common causes of motorcycle accidents and take steps to protect yourself. 

If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident caused by someone else's negligence, it may be worth consulting with an experienced Florida motorcycle accident attorney to explore your options for pursuing a personal injury claim.

Motorcycle Accident Statistics

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data, there were 4,985 motorcyclist fatalities on U.S. roads in 2018, which is 5% lower than the previous year. The 2018 fatality rate of motorcyclists was 24.83 per 100 million vehicle miles traveled, and since the numbers have only risen. Compared to car occupants, this fatality rate was 27 times higher, highlighting the greater risk associated with riding a motorcycle, which lacks the safety features of a closed-cabin vehicle. The major cause of death in motorcycle accidents further underscores the increased danger of riding a motorcycle.

Are Motorcycles More Dangerous Than Other Vehicles?

Motorcycles are more dangerous than conventional automobiles because they offer little to no physical protection to their riders. Unlike cars and trucks, which are surrounded by metal cages that absorb much of the force of an impact in an accident, motorcyclists are directly exposed to the force of an impact. The lack of protection means that injuries sustained in motorcycle accidents are often more severe than those in car accidents. While car manufacturers constantly design their vehicles to better absorb shock and protect their occupants, motorcycle manufacturers face limitations in doing the same due to the design nature of motorcycles. 

Most Common Cause Of Motorcycle Accident Fatalities

Head injuries are the leading cause of death in motorcycle accidents. The head is a crucial part of the body and is also susceptible to injury. Due to the lack of protection that a motorcycle provides in comparison to a car, riding a motorcycle increases the risk of head trauma and injury. The impact of colliding with a vehicle or hitting the road when ejected from a motorcycle places the head and brain at significant risk of harm. 

Other Common Causes Of Motorcycle Accident Fatalities

Compared to car accidents, motorcycle accidents have a higher fatality rate due to several factors. One of the leading causes of motorcycle accident fatalities is speeding. Motorcycles are designed for agility and speed, but when riders push the limits, they increase the likelihood of accidents. High-speed travel reduces the rider’s reaction time to hazards, such as obstacles and other vehicles on the road, and makes it difficult to avoid accidents. 

Another significant cause of motorcycle accident fatalities is the use of alcohol and drugs while riding. Operating a motorcycle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is extremely dangerous and can lead to serious accidents. Impaired judgment, coordination, and reaction times can make it challenging for riders to operate their motorcycles safely. Moreover, impaired riders may take risks such as weaving in and out of traffic, increasing the likelihood of accidents. 

Tips For Riding A Motorcycle Safely

To ensure safety as a motorcyclist, there are several important steps that can be taken. The most critical step is to protect the head and brain by wearing a helmet. According to the NHTSA, helmets prevented 1,872 motorcyclist deaths in 2017, and if all motorcyclists wore helmets, more than ⅓ of motorcyclist deaths could be prevented. To find a helmet that meets the needs of a motorcyclist, Revzilla and other websites offer reviews on various helmets. It’s important to choose a helmet that is Department of Transportation approved. They will display a DOT sticker. The second thing that motorcyclists can do is increase their visibility on the road. Many motorcycle accidents are caused by a lack of visibility. To minimize this risk, motorcyclists should make sure their lights are always in working condition, and consider carrying spare bulbs. Motorcyclists can wear clothing that increases their visibility, such as reflective vests, especially if riding a motorcycle at night. 

Finally, for more safety tips on operating a motorcycle, check out our 7 Safety Tips for Motorcyclists. By following these guidelines, motorcyclists can greatly reduce the risk of injury or death while riding a motorcycle. 

Contact A Motorcycle Accident Attorney Near You

If you or a loved one has sustained injuries or been wrongfully killed in a motorcycle accident, it is crucial to seek the guidance of an experienced motorcycle accident attorney near you. With their expertise, a motorcycle accident lawyer can help you comprehend your legal rights and the options available to you. They can also assist you in navigating the intricate legal system, communicating with insurance companies, and negotiating a just settlement. Moreover, if your accident occurred due to someone else’s carelessness, you might be eligible for compensation for medical costs, lost earnings, pain and suffering, and other damages. So, don’t hesitate to contact a motorcycle accident lawyer near you to discuss your case and get the legal representation you need to protect your rights and receive the compensation you deserve. 

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