Motorcycle accidents are all too common, despite only accounting for 3% of all registered vehicles on the road. After all, Motorcycles are inherently more dangerous than cars. Motorcycles more likely to be involved in a crash that causes death or injury. Additionally, a greater percentage of motorcycle accidents are caused by alcohol compared to car accidents.
So what makes motorcycle accidents different from car and truck accidents? What are some common causes of motorcycle accidents, and how do they compare to car accidents?
1. Motorcycles Are Higher Risk
The main difference between motorcycles and cars is that motorcycles are much riskier. After all, motorcycles make up just 3% of registered vehicles but motorcyclists represent 14% of all motor vehicle fatalities.
But why is it so much riskier to ride a motorcycle? Well, there are a few basic reasons. Firstly, The design of the motorcycle itself makes riding riskier. After all, a motorcycle has no advanced safety features to offer protection in case of an accident.
Additionally, many states have more relaxed helmet laws which lead to a higher rate of fatalities and brain injuries. The motorcycle’s smaller profile also makes it more difficult for other motorists to see, causing collisions between motorcycles and cars.
All in all, motorcycles are inherently more dangerous than cars or trucks.
2. Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
So now that we have a better understanding of why motorcycles are more dangerous, let’s talk about some common causes of motorcycle accidents. A majority of car accidents are caused by some sort of driver error, and the same can be said for motorcycle accidents.
A few common causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- Left-Hand Turns: Motorcyclists are most in danger of an accident when a car is making a left-hand turn. In fact, about 42% of all traffic accidents involving a car and motorcycle involve a car turning left. So why are left-hand turns so dangerous for motorcyclists? Well, that’s mainly because the motorcycle may be struck while going straight through an intersection, trying to pass the vehicle, or trying to overtake the car. In many cases, motorcycles are trying to pass a car within the same lane and the car driver cannot see or expect the motorcycle’s maneuver.
- Lane Splitting: Most states prohibit lane splitting because it is a contributing factor to motorcycle accidents. Motorcycles driving between two lanes are at a higher risk of being involved in an accident due to reduced space for maneuvering, close proximity to nearby vehicles, and the fact that a car driver doesn’t anticipate a motorcycle passing them in slow or stopped traffic.
- Speeding and Alcohol: Another major cause of accidents is alcohol consumption. In fact, about half of all single motorcycle accidents are caused by alcohol or speeding.
These are only a few of the causes of accidents, however, they are the most common. It’s important to be aware of how these accidents occur in order to prevent them from occurring.
The Car Accident vs. Motorcycle Takeaway
All in all, motorcycles are much riskier than cars. The best way to avoid accidents is by being aware of your surroundings, and understanding the risks.
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