What Makes Motorcycle Accidents So Deadly?
There are a number of factors that put motorcyclists at risk for serious injury or death. These include dangerous road conditions, rider error and reckless drivers on the roadway. These types of accidents are typically fatal and occur at an extremely high rate, especially in the afternoon hours when riders are more likely to be on the roads.
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Unsafe Riding: unsafe riding can result in a crash because the motorcyclist is not paying attention to their surroundings or is going too fast for the bike’s ability to handle a turn or corner. These crashes can also happen if the rider is distracted or operating their bike under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Driver Errors: Many collisions between vehicles involving motorcycles and cars happen when drivers fail to notice the bike or judge its speed correctly as they are making a left hand turn at an intersection. This is because of the difference in visual profile between a motorcycle and a passenger vehicle, as well as their narrower profiles and the fact that they are often positioned closer to the road than other vehicles.
Lane Switching: Changing lanes can be dangerous for any type of vehicle, but it can become even more risky when it’s done on a motorcycle because of the difference in profile. These accidents can be deadly because vehicle drivers don’t always see the motorcycle in a lane-switching collision.
Reckless Driving: Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol can be a major cause of motorcycle accidents, and they are often more deadly than other types of crashes. Drunk drivers are three times more likely to be involved in a motorcycle accident than drivers who are sober.
Speeding: The severity of a crash is increased with the increase in speed, and the effectiveness of devices like airbags and seat belts are compromised at higher speeds.
Drunk Driving: The dangers of operating a motorcycle while intoxicated are well-known. About 30 percent of motorcycle riders who are killed in collisions have a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher.
Intersections: Nearly half of all motorcycle-car collisions involve cars turning at an intersection. These accidents often occur without warning and can lead to devastating injuries if the motorcyclist is hit head-on or forced to take off their helmet and wipe out on their bike.
Cars Trying to Pass: Another common cause of motorcycle-car collisions is when a driver tries to pass a motorcyclist. This can happen if the driver fails to realize they have the right of way, or if they try to overtake a motorcyclist in an effort to get a better position for the turn.
Failure to Yield: It’s legal for vehicles to make a left turn from any intersection, but it’s still important that drivers know how to safely do so when they are behind a motorcycle. In Indiana, for example, a motorcycle can only make a left turn when it is clearly visible to the driver of the vehicle who will be making the turn.