In 2019, 5,014 motorcycle riders died in crashes in the United States. That was more than double of all motorcyclist deaths in 1997.
Motorcycle riders are statistically more in danger than typical motorists. As a motorcyclist, you are about 27 times more likely to die in a crash than a passenger car occupant per mile traveled.
But what exactly causes motorbike accidents? Knowing the answer to this question can help you take the appropriate action to reduce the chances of getting involved in a motorcycle crash.
In this post, we highlight the top nine motorcycle accident causes in the United States.
1. Failure to Look Properly
One of the top reasons for motorbike crashes is road users not looking out for motorbikes while on the road. This especially happens at road junctions. Sadly, this has continued to happen despite years of campaigns that remind road users to keenly lookout for motorbikes.
The best way to prevent accidents that happen this way is for drivers to be more observant when using the road.
2. Misjudging Speeds
Another top cause for motorbike crashes is drivers underestimating the speed of oncoming motorbikes as they pull away from junctions. Different reasons are to blame for this, including driver distraction, lack of attention, blind spots, and so on. Typically, the driver looks for the absence of vehicles and ignores the presence of motorbikes, which might be approaching the road junction at speed.
3. Poor Road Conditions
A road accident that involves a motorbike can also occur due to the failure of the motorcyclist to take heed of the surface of the road. This especially happens when you’re using a country road, where all kinds of hazards often lie in wait. These hazards include potholes, wet leaves, fallen trees, and livestock manure.
Motorcyclists should thus try to ride at a pace that allows them the ability and reaction time to take appropriate action within their range of vision. Generally, you should slow down when entering a corner and only increase speed when on the way out.
4. Other Road Users’ Blind Spots
While this is rarely intentional, a motorbike accident can occur when a vehicle suddenly veers into space that’s already occupied by a motorbike rider. In other words, the motorcyclist is within the driver’s blind spot.
Vehicle drivers are rarely psychologically prepared to look out for motorcyclists. Some of them cause accidents when making what they perceive as simple lane changes. If a certain lane seems faster than the lane they’re on, most drivers automatically move to that lane, often without regard for a motorcyclist who might also be using the same lane.
5. Getting Hit While Stationary
Another leading cause of motorcycle accidents is cars running into stationary motorbikes. While it can be caused by many different reasons, it doesn’t make the accident’s outcome less dangerous. Sometimes, this type of traffic accident can cause death.
As a motorcyclist, it’s advisable to avoid such scenarios by making other cars your crumple zone. For instance, if a vehicle has stopped ahead of you at traffic lights and there are other cars approaching behind you, you can move ahead of the car in front. Doing so helps protect you from potential subsequent impacts.
That said, remember that you can always seek compensation in case a driver hits you when you’re on your motorbike. Talk to this group for legal help.
A stationary car that suddenly opens one or more of its doors onto the street or road can lead to a motorcycle crash. This type of accident is referred to as dooring.
Often, dooring happens because the person opening the car door hasn’t looked. However, you still need to think ahead and stay mindful when approaching a newly parked vehicle.
7. Unfavorable Weather Conditions
Adverse weather is also to blame for many traffic accidents, with motorcyclists often experiencing more harm than people protected by vehicles. Unfortunately, you can’t do much about weather conditions.
However, you can prepare your motorbike for adverse weather by ensuring that its tires are checked regularly. Further, you need to take sensible precautions when riding in adverse weather. For instance, you can slow down, keep ample distance between you and other road users, and stay on the lookout for additional road hazards, including manhole covers, fallen tree branches, and more.
Drunk driving is not a problem that affects car drivers alone. Intoxicated motorbikes are actually involved in a disproportionately high number of crashes than their sober counterparts.
The solution here is simple. Never take alcohol before getting on your motorbike.
9. Group Accidents
Riding together in a group can be a thrilling experience. However, sometimes it is dangerous, with the outcome being lethal.
Unlike you may think, not everyone riding in a group contains a wealth of riding experience. Often, some riders let their mind wander off. In case something unexpected happens within the group, these riders can easily cause a crash, which may often have a domino-effect crash.
The best way to avoid such accidents is to always keep a safe distance between you and other riders whenever riding as a group. Additionally, try to be aware of what’s happening next to you to avoid making mistakes that may lead to a group crash.
Avoiding Motorbike Accidents Is the Responsibility of All Road Users
While motorbike accidents have been on the rise in recent years, they can still be avoided if all road users are determined to do so. One of the best places to start is by knowing the top causes of these accidents.
Are you interested in knowing more about how to stay safe while riding your motorbike? Please keep visiting our blog for our featured articles.