It’s no secret that having an accident while riding a motorcycle is far more dangerous than being in a car accident. More than 80% of all reported motorcycle crashes result in injury or death, according to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration.
According to government data, motorcycles make up only 3 percent of registered vehicles but accounted for 15% of all traffic fatalities in 2017. Fatalities among riders and passengers has more than doubled since 1997.
There are some things you can do to improve your safety while riding a bike. By far, the most important thing is to ALWAYS wear a helmet.
Here is some information to help you pick the right helmet:
According to the National Safety Council, here are other things you can do in addition to wearing a helmet:
Choose a bike that fits you; "supersport bikes" have driver death rates about four times that of cruisers or standard bikes, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety
Invest in antilock brakes
New riders should take a motorcycle safety course, and experienced riders should take refresher courses after being off their bikes for a while
Know the rules of the road
Be aware that riding with a passenger requires considerably more skill
Never drink and ride
Drive defensively, especially at intersections, where half of all collisions occur
Watch for hazards like potholes, manhole covers, oil slicks, puddles, debris, railroad tracks and gravel
Assume you are invisible to other motorists and position yourself to be seen
Use headlights day and night
Be courteous; don't weave in and out of lanes, or ride on the shoulder or between lanes
Wear bright and/or reflective clothing that is durable and boots that cover the ankles
Wear goggles, glasses or use a face shield that is ventilated to prevent fogging, and make sure it's clear if riding at night
A case we handled several years ago shows the danger of motorcycle riding. Our client’s husband was a 72 year old man who was on a large cruiser bike, had the headlight on, was wearing a helmet and obeyed all of the traffic laws. A man driving a commercial vehicle decided to make a right turn from the middle lane of traffic and clipped the back of the bike. The man on the bike fell and landed on the street, dying of a brain hemorrhage a short time later. He did everything right and still lost his life. We were able to obtain for his widow a $3 million policy limits settlement for his tragic death.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, or if a loved one has died in an accident, we can help. Call us immediately for a free consultation.