When motorcycle accidents happen, the effects can be devastating. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), motorcyclists are roughly 27 times more likely than people in passenger cars to die in a traffic accident per miles traveled.
Several factors can lead to a motorcycle crash, and some are more prevalent than others. Please continue reading to learn about how most motorcycle accidents happen on our roadways.
Alcohol is an unfortunately common factor in motorcycle accidents.
According to the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS), 29 percent of fatally injured motorcycle riders (4,733 people) in 2019 had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) at or above 0.08 percent. Likewise, in 2019, 50 percent of motorcyclists killed at night had BACs at or above 0.08 percent.
Drinking and driving is dangerous for any motorist, especially motorcyclists riding a two-wheeled vehicle. Alcohol can impair a motorcyclist’s brain functioning, thinking, reasoning, and muscle coordination. At night, when visibility is low, the effects of drinking alcohol and driving may intensify. For these reasons, drunk driving can drastically increase the risk of a motorcycle collision.
Motorcycles can reach high speeds and riding fast on the open road may be a major appeal for many bikers. However, riding too fast can be seriously dangerous.
According to the Insurance Information Institute, speeding is a major factor
in motorcycle accidents. When a motorcyclist speeds, they can suffer the loss of traction or stability and lose control of their bike. Traveling too fast for the conditions can make it difficult to brake or change course when necessary.
Depending on the circumstances, speeding can cause a collision with another vehicle or object or cause a motorcyclist to skid off their bike onto the road. This can also lead to a potential secondary accident where the motorcyclist is struck by an oncoming vehicle.
A lack of riding experience can play a role in a motorcycle accident.
Motorcycles require a different skill set to operate than a typical passenger vehicle.
In New York, bikers must receive a valid motorcycle license to ride a motorcycle legally. To do this, motorcyclists must get a learner permit and complete an official motorcycle road test. These requirements are in place to ensure motorcyclists have the practice and skills to operate a bike safely.
Unfortunately, some riders do not complete these steps to get an official motorcycle license. The NHTSA found that, in 2017, 30 percent of the riders involved in fatal accidents did not have valid motorcycle licenses. Lack of experience, inadequate training, and reckless riding can contribute to a potential motorcycle accident, which can have devastating outcomes for riders.
Inclement weather and poor road conditions can also pose a risk to motorcyclists. Precipitation such as snow and rain can impair a biker’s visibility and create a loss of friction on the roadways. Ice, especially black ice, is difficult to see on the road. An unsuspecting biker may ride over black ice without slowing down and find themselves spinning out of control.
Rainy weather is actually one of the most dangerous types of weather for all motorists, including bikers. With two wheels, motorcycles are inherently less stable than other vehicles. Slippery surfaces can easily cause bikers to lose control on the road and be thrown from their bikes. Rainfall can also hide obstructions such as potholes and debris, which can trigger a single-vehicle collision.
Motorcyclists can make mistakes, leading to a serious accident, but the truth is many bikers are often injured through no fault of their own. Reckless motorists also put motorcyclists at risk on the roadways in a variety of ways.
Some examples of motorist actions that can cause a collision include failing to yield the right of way to a motorcyclist and making a left-hand turn into a motorcyclist traveling through an intersection. Accidents between cars and motorcycles can also result from a driver who is distracted, speeding, or driving under the influence.
If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident, don’t hesitate to call William Mattar Law Offices today. Our motorcycle accident lawyers are standing by, ready to help with your case. Just complete our online form or call our offices at (844) 444-4444 to schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys.