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The Top 22 Causes of Motorcycle Accidents

April 24, 2015 by The Parrish Law Firm

Motorcycle riding has become more popular over the recent years  with its appeal to a new group of riders consisting of more affluent and older individuals.

Parrish Law Firm, PLLC cares about your safety and has put together The Top 22 causes of Motorcycle Accidents as is detailed in the Hurt Report. Hopefully this list will help save at least one life.

Before we get into detailed figures and percentages, it is important to realize that the top two causes of motorcycle accidents are Speeding and Alcohol consumption.

Now, let’s take a look at some interesting and telling numbers and facts:

  1. Approximately three-fourths of motorcycle accidents involved collision with another vehicle, which was most usually a passenger automobile.
  2. Approximately one-fourth of motorcycle accidents were single vehicle accidents involving the motorcycle colliding with the roadway or some fixed object in the environment.
  3. Vehicle failure accounted for less than 3% of these motorcycle accidents, and most of those were single vehicle accidents where control was lost due to a puncture flat.
  4. In the single vehicle accidents, motorcycle rider error was present as the accident precipitating factor in about two-thirds of the cases, with the typical error being a slide-out and fall due to over braking or running wide on a curve due to excess speed or under-cornering.
  5. Roadway defects (pavement ridges, potholes, etc.) were the cause in 2% of the accidents; animal involvement accounted for  1% of the accidents.
  6. In the multiple vehicle accidents, the driver of the other vehicle violated the motorcycle right-of-way and caused the accident in two-thirds of those events.
  7. The failure of motorists to detect and recognize motorcycles in traffic is a predominating cause of motorcycle accidents. The driver of the other vehicle involved in collision with the motorcycle did not see the motorcycle before the collision, or did not see the motorcycle until it was too late to avoid the collision.
  8. Deliberate hostile action by a motorist against a motorcycle rider is a rare accident cause.
  9. The most frequent accident configuration is the motorcycle proceeding straight when an automobile makes a left turn in front of the oncoming motorcycle.
  10. Intersections are the most likely place for the motorcycle accident, with the other vehicle violating the motorcycle right-of-way, and often violating traffic controls.
  11. Weather is not a factor in 98% of motorcycle accidents.
  12. Most motorcycle accidents frequently involve short trips associated with shopping, errands, friends, entertainment or recreation, and these accidents are likely to happen in very short time close to the trip origin.
  13. The view of the motorcycle or the other vehicle involved in the accident is limited by glare or obstructed by other vehicles in almost half of the multiple vehicle accidents.
  14. Visibility of the motorcycle is a critical factor in the multiple vehicle accidents, and accident involvement is significantly reduced by the use of motorcycle headlamps during daylight hours and the wearing of high visibility yellow, orange or bright red jackets.
  15. More than three fourths of all accident hazards are within 45 degrees of either side of straight ahead.
  16. The motorcycle riders involved in accidents are essentially without training; 92% were self-taught or learned from family or friends. Motorcycle rider training experience reduces accident involvement and is related to reduced injuries in the event of accidents.
  17. Lack of attention to the driving task is a common factor for the motorcyclist in an accident.
  18. Almost half of the fatal accidents show alcohol involvement.
  19. Motorcycle riders in these accidents showed significant collision avoidance problems. Most riders would over-brake and skid the rear wheel, and under-brake the front wheel greatly reducing collision avoidance deceleration. The ability to counter-steer and swerve was essentially absent.
  20. The typical motorcycle accident allows the motorcyclist just less than 2 seconds to complete all collision avoidance action.
  21. The likelihood of injury is extremely high in motorcycle accidents: 98% of the multiple vehicle collisions and 96% of the single vehicle accidents resulted in some kind of injury to the motorcycle rider while 45% resulted in more than a minor injury.
  22. Seventy-three percent of the accident-involved motorcycle riders used no eye protection, and it is likely that the wind on the unprotected eyes contributed an impairment of vision which delayed hazard detection.

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Highway Loss Data Institute, a total of 4,381 motorcyclists died in crashes in 2013 and in 2012, 60 out of every 100,000 registered motorcycles were involved in a fatal crash. Motorcycle deaths accounted for 13 percent of all motor vehicle crash deaths in 2013. The federal government estimates that per mile traveled in 2012, the number of deaths on motorcycles was over 26 times the number in cars.

The Parrish Law Firm, PLLC wishes you safe and happy riding in 2015 and hopes that this list we have put together will help save lives.

If you or someone that you know has been injured in a Motorcycle Accident in Virginia, contact the Parrish Law Firm, PLLC Today for help.

The Parrish Law Firm, PLLC Personal InjuryMotorcycle Accident Attorney works with ALL Virginia residents who have been injured because of another party’s negligence and are looking for fair compensation. Contact us today for a free case consultation or call us at 703-906-4229.

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A representative of the Parrish Law Firm, PLLC researched and wrote this article with Mr. Parrish’s consent. If you have any questions regarding the legal implications of what you have just read, please send us your question by clicking here so we can have our attorney review it.

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