When it comes to motorcycles, many people believe that they are inherently dangerous vehicles. And it’s true that riding a motorcycle carries more risk than driving a car. But are motorcycles really as dangerous as people think? The truth might surprise you.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), motorcycles account for just 3% of all registered vehicles in the United States. However, they also account for 14% of all traffic fatalities. At first glance, this seems like a disproportionately high number. However, it’s important to consider the context.
For a free legal consultation,
In 2019, there were 5,014 motorcycle fatalities in the United States. While this is certainly a tragedy, it is important to note that this number has actually decreased in recent years. In 2018, there were 5,229 motorcycle fatalities. In fact, motorcycle fatalities have been on the decline since 2016.
When you consider the fact that there are millions of motorcycles on the road, the number of fatalities becomes less alarming. In 2019, there were approximately 8.4 million registered motorcycles in the United States. This means that the fatality rate for motorcycles was 59 deaths per 100,000 registered motorcycles. While this is higher than the fatality rate for cars, it’s also lower than many people assume.
Click to contact our personal injury lawyers today
It is also worth noting that not all motorcycle accidents are the rider’s fault. In fact, a study conducted by the University of South Florida found that 60% of motorcycle accidents involving another vehicle were caused by the other vehicle, not the motorcycle rider. This is often due to drivers failing to see motorcycles or failing to yield the right of way.
Of course, none of this is to say that motorcycles are completely safe. As with any vehicle, there are risks involved. However, it is important to have an accurate understanding of those risks in order to make informed decisions about riding.
So, what can you do to ride a motorcycle safely? Here are a few tips:
- Wear appropriate safety gear. This includes a DOT-approved helmet, as well as gloves, boots, and protective clothing. In the event of an accident, proper gear can greatly reduce the severity of injuries.
- Take a motorcycle safety course. These courses are designed to teach you the skills you need to ride safely. Many states require them for new riders, but even if your state doesn’t, it’s a good idea to take one.
- Ride defensively. Assume that other drivers on the road do not see you, and ride accordingly. This means leaving plenty of space between yourself and other vehicles on the roadway, and being prepared in the event you need to take evasive action.
- Stay sober. Riding a motorcycle while impaired by drugs or alcohol greatly increases your risk of an accident. When impaired, your judgment is altered, as well, and the choices you make on the road may not be safe.
- Keep your motorcycle well-maintained. Regular maintenance can help prevent mechanical failures that could lead to an accident.
By following these tips, you can greatly reduce your risk of an accident while riding a motorcycle.
Complete a Free Case Evaluation form now
It’s also worth nothing that there are different types of motorcycles, and some are inherently safer than others. For example, cruiser-style motorcycles tend to have lower centers of gravity and are easier to handle at lower speeds, making them a good choice for beginners. On the other hand, sport bikes are designed for speed and agility, but are also more difficult to handle and require more skill and experience.
The choice to ride a motorcycle is a personal one. There are some risks involved, but there are also many benefits. I feel pretty confident that most bikers feel the benefits greatly outweigh the risks. Riding a motorcycle can be a thrilling and rewarding experience. By understanding the risks and taking steps to ride safely, you can enjoy the freedom of the open road while minimizing your chances of an accident.
Whether by motorcycle or another vehicle, be safe on the roads. And if you are involved in a motorcycle accident, call 1-800-MOTORCYCLE as soon as possible to speak with our team of dedicated and experienced motorcycle accident attorneys. With over 30 years representing bikers, we are the team to truth with your case.
Call or text 1-800-414-5196 or complete a Free Case Evaluation form