In 2012, over 8 million motorcycles shared the roadways with passenger vehicles. In general, motorcyclists are more likely to be involved in accidents, thus driving with care can play a role in avoiding motorcycle-related incidents and injuries. Motorcycle drivers and their passengers have a higher risk of serious injury when an accident occurs, as the motorcycle does not provide the same protection as a closed vehicle. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicates that people on a motorcycle are five times more likely to become injured in an accident than those occupying a closed vehicle.
According to one institute, 88,000 motorcyclists sustained injuries in accidents in 2013 and accounted for 14 percent of traffic fatalities. People over the age of 40 tend to be involved in more accidents than younger riders. Similarly, the older motorcyclists were more likely to sustain fractures, dislocations and other serious injuries. Riders over 60 are over twice as likely to become injured as their younger counterparts.
Drivers can take steps to reduce the risk of being injured in a car accident or motorcycle crash by performing their legal obligation to exercise caution while driving. Many motorcycle accidents involve a failure to heed legal speed limits, a motorcycle’s low visibility to closed-vehicle drivers and the use of alcohol while driving. The risk of injury can be exacerbated by hazardous road conditions during rainy or snowy weather. Thus, it is critical for all drivers to remain aware of the other vehicles traveling on the roadways, maintain safe distances and avoid reckless or negligent behavior such as driving while under the influence.
If an accident occurs, the victim may want to take legal action if negligence was involved. An experienced personal injury lawyer might be able to seek compensation for damages on behalf of the victim to recover some of the financial loss.