Motorcycle crash statistics offer an important overview of the hazards that bikers face. Not surprisingly, motorcyclists are much more likely to be killed or injured in a crash when compared to car occupants. This and other findings by the Insurance Information Institute highlight the risk that we, as bikers, take when we ride.
I’m not about to let the chance of a crash keep me off my bike, but I do think it’s important for bikers to be aware of the potential risks that we face. By understanding motorcycle crash statistics, we can make choices that can minimize our chances of being involved in a crash.
Speeding and alcohol are two major contributing factors in motorcycle crashes. Again, this is pretty common sense stuff. But what you may not know is that older bikers are more likely to be severely injured in a motorcycle crash. This might be because older bikers struggle with their reaction times and may have poor vision when compared to younger riders. Also, older bikers tend to ride larger motorcycles which may roll more often.
Supersport motorcycles are known for achiever high levels of speed and are often used for racing. Supersport motorcycles also sport super high fatality rates: as much as four times the fatality rates of other motorcycles. That fact alone is enough to keep me off these bikes. Again, it’s all about risk. While that is a risk I am not willing to take, another biker might gladly accept it. Understanding the facts allows bikers to make educated decisions.
The annual economic losses from motorcycle crashes are a whopping $16 billion a year. These costs represent emergency services, medical care, insurance costs and claims, attorney fees, and loss of productivity and wages. Lost productivity alone results in 44 percent of these losses. We see this every day as clients are unable to return to work for weeks or even months following a motorcycle crash. If you are unable to work after a motorcycle crash, contact us and we will help determine if you may be due compensation for lost wages.
Motorcycle helmets, training courses, and ABS systems have all been shown to reduce injuries. In the year 2016, 65 percent of motorcycle riders report wearing helmets. This figure is actually down from 1998 when 67 percent of riders wore helmets. Fatality rates have remained relatively unchanged. Around 5,000 bikers are killed in motorcycle crashes each year. This ranges from a low of 4,518 in 2010 to a high of 5,312 in 2008. In addition to these fatalities, about 90,000 bikers are injured in crashes each year.
Thirty percent of all motorcyclist fatalities occur in crashes involving alcohol use. This sobering number should be enough to keep all bikers from even considering a drink before they ride. When you drink and drive, you risk not only your safety but also the safety and well-being of others on the road. Penalties for drunk and impaired driving are steep and may be enough to keep you off your bike for a very long time. It’s simply not worth the risk to yourself and to others.
Florida leads the nation in motorcycle crash fatalities. This is likely due, in part, to the fact that bikers in Florida ride year-round as weather conditions permit. California and Texas rank second and third. The state with the fewest motorcycle crashes turns out to be North Dakota (technically, it’s the District of Columbia, although based on its small size and the fact that most wouldn’t consider it a state, we’re sticking with North Dakota)
In multiple-vehicle crashes, about 2/3 of the crashes were caused by drivers impinging on a biker’s right-of-way. This means that in many crashes, the driver’s insurance company is responsible for reimbursing the biker for medical bills, pain and suffering, and damages. These damages, in many cases, can be many thousands of dollars. Of course, the insurance company won’t present it that way. They will do everything in their power to get you to accept the smallest settlement possible. That’s why it’s critical to have an experienced motorcycle accident attorney on your side. The team at Kass & Moses will fight relentlessly to get you the money you deserve for your injuries, pain and suffering, and time off work. As we shared earlier, motorcycle crashes are responsible for $16 billion in costs each year – get what you deserve!