Every motorcyclist knows that their riding their vehicles carries risks that aren’t faced by drivers of cars and trucks. Motorcyclists are simply much, much more vulnerable than any other drivers on the road.
Responsible motorcyclists take this knowledge into account, and they work hard to protect themselves from the risk of a motorcycle accident. They wear protective gear, keep an eye out for obstructions and slick areas on roads and exercise caution around other vehicles. Still, there’s only so much a motorcyclist can do to protect themselves against a careless driver.
Causes of motorcycle accidents
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration and other state and federal agencies keep exhaustive statistics about the causes and effects of motorcycle accidents. Most studies show that a large number of motorcycle accidents are single-vehicle accidents caused by road hazards, such as oil slicks. Another large piece of the total number is attributable to a mistake on the part of the motorcyclist, such as driving while intoxicated. But many studies have found the top cause of motorcycle accidents is a collision with another vehicle.
A 2013 study by the Florida Department of Transportation found that 34% of motorcycle crashes were single-vehicle accidents. Just 19% of car and truck crashes are single-vehicle accidents. For very serious accidents, the number for motorcycle crashes goes up to near 50%.
Still, even that number indicates that about half of all serious motorcycle accidents involve another vehicle. In these multi-vehicle accidents, the study found, the leading cause was the other driver violating the motorcyclist’s right of way.
Car and truck drivers are often unable to see motorcyclists in time to avert an accident. Sometimes this is because they neglected to look for them.
When a negligent driver injures someone else in an accident, the injured has a right to recover compensation by holding the negligent party liable for their damages. In a motorcycle accident, these damages are often very serious. It’s important for an injured motorcyclist to get help from an experienced attorney who can help them fight for the full amount of compensation they need.