motorcycle accident attorney
Motorcycle Accident Statistics
It is easy to understand why motorcycles have become so popular across the country. Driving on the open road and taking in beautiful scenery as the fresh air hits you in the face can be an exhilarating experience. However, it is also a very dangerous one. Due to the lack of protection afforded by motorcycles, injuries tend to be catastrophic in the event of a motorcycle accident.
The following statistics will illustrate the true extent of the dangers posed by riding a motorcycle. It is important to exercise great caution when driving these vehicles. The stakes are too high to drive recklessly.
Motorcycle Accident Injuries and Fatalities
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 5,290 motorcycle drivers were killed in 2008 during motorcycle accidents. This represents a 2% increase from 2007. Approximately 96,000 motorcycle drivers were injured in 2008.
In 2007, motorcycle drivers were 37 times more likely to die in a motor vehicle accident than drivers and passengers in cars. Motorcyclists were also 9 times more likely to suffer an injury than passenger car occupants involved in motor vehicle accidents.
In 2008, motorcycle drivers comprised 14% of all motor vehicle accident fatalities despite accounting for only 3% of all registered vehicles in the United States. In 2007, the fatality rate for motorcycle drivers was six times the fatality rate for passenger car occupants per registered vehicle.
Motorcycle Involvement in Accidents
The NHTSA has reported the following statistics for 2008:
- Approximately 47% of all fatal motorcycle accidents involved a collision with another motor vehicle
- During two-vehicle accidents, 77% of motorcycles were struck in the front while only 7% were hit from behind
- Motorcycles are substantially more likely than other vehicles to be involved in a fatal accident involving a collision with a stationary object – 25% for motorcycles, 19% for cars, 14% for small trucks, 4% for large trucks
- In 41% of the 2,387 two-vehicle fatal accidents involving motorcycles, the other vehicle turned left into the motorcycle
- 35% of motorcycle drivers killed in motorcycle accidents were speeding, compared to 23% of car drivers in fatal auto accidents
- Fatal motorcycle accidents are more likely to be alcohol-related than any other type of fatal motor vehicle accident – 29% of fatal motorcycle accidents involved a driver with a BAC over .08 compared to 23% of fatal auto accidents, 23% of accidents involving small trucks, and 2% of accidents involving large trucks
- 43% of motorcyclists involved in single-vehicle fatal accidents had a BAC over .08
Helmet Use and Motorcycle Accidents
The NHTSA has generated some statistics indicated that wearing a helmet can greatly reduce your risk of sustaining a fatal injury in the event of a motorcycle accident:
- In 2008, helmets saved the lives of 1,829 motorcycle drivers; if all drivers had worn helmets, 823 more lives could have been saved
- Helmets are 37% effective in preventing fatal injuries during a motorcycle accident
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Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycle accidents can be traumatic and tragic events. The stats speak for themselves. Serious bodily harm and even death are often the result of a motorcycle accident. Of the accidents that do occur, approximately 1 out of every 5 is actually lucky enough to come out of the ordeal with just minor bumps and bruises. The lack of a protective barrier between the driver and the road ultimately leaves motorcyclists in a very vulnerable position. There are many common causes of motorcycle accidents, one of the most predominant ones are other motorists (cars, trucks) not seeing or recognizing motorcycles in dense traffic.
Several reports lend support to this claim as they suggest that virtually 2/3’s of all accidents involving a motorcycle and another motor vehicle are a direct result of a motorist in the car turning into the lane of a motorcycle and violating the motorcyclist’s right of way. It has also been suggested that motorcyclists are 27 times more likely to die in a collision than are passengers of the other motor vehicle and they are also five times more likely to sustain some injury. One can see then, the devastating effects of car-motorcycle collisions, and you need a motorcycle accident attorney.
There are many other types of motorcycle collisions that occur quite frequently. One in particular is riders who are inexperienced and simply do not know the limitations of their motorcycle and tend to push the limits. This brings about another common cause of motorcycle accidents. Of course, speeding is not solely restricted to new and young motorcyclists, as often older and more experienced drivers are also guilty of operating their bikes beyond the legal maximum speed. Many motorcyclists love the feel of the wind blowing through their hair, the freedom of the open road and the thrill of going so fast at a mere few inches from the asphalt but, traveling at velocities over the speed limit can have dire consequences. A simple slip of the wheel or unexpected obstacle in front of the motorcycle can send the driver reeling out of control. Thus, speeding can be very dangerous and is often the cause of motorcycle accidents.It is important that you have a motorcycle accident attorney to settle legal procedure for accident claims.
Another common cause of motorcycle accidents is a result of the motorcyclist’s negligence. In cases where the accident does not involve another vehicle, the failure of the motorcyclist to slow down when cornering or simply under-cornering as well as over braking in some instances. There are many additional agents that could cause bodily harm after the initial accident also. Fuel leakage and spills in the post-crash phase can introduce a fire hazard and are common in approximately 60 percent of all accidents sites.
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