motorcycle accident attorneyAre Motorcycles More Dangerous than Cars?

If you ride a motorcycle, you understand the thrill and excitement of hitting the open road on a warm summer day. The freedom of getting on your bike and riding “where ever the road takes you” is part of the lure of motorcycling.

But riding a motorcycle is not always like it appears on television commercials. If you ride often enough, you understand the dangers inherent in motorcycle riding. Despite how careful you may be while riding, there is always a likelihood of being involved in an accident. In fact, according to U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), you are 28 times more likely to be involved in an accident riding on a motorcycle than you are driving in any other vehicle, including a car.

Motorcycle Accident Statistics

Here are some interesting motorcycle crash and safety statistics published by Road Racerz in December 2020:

Motorcycle rider statistics:

  • 81% of all motorcycle owners are male, with a median age of 50 years
  • Riders most likely to be involved in crashes are between the ages of 16 and 24
  • Most riders who cause an accident have already been involved in at least one other accident
  • 92% of all riders in crashes taught themselves how to ride
  • Most motorcycle riders who are involved in accidents have less than 5 months of riding experience
  • Less than 10% of motorcyclists involved in accidents have insurance
  • 31% of motorcyclists killed in accidents have no valid driver’s license

Motorcycle accident statistics:

  • One of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents is inattention
  • Most accidents occur at the very beginning of a planned trip
  • The weather contributes to the cause of only 2% of motorcycle accidents
  • Only 2% of all motorcycle accidents are caused by potholes or other physical road conditions
  • Two-thirds of motorcycle accidents involving another vehicle are the result of the other motorist violating the motorcyclist’s right-of-way—usually at an intersection
  • In the average motorcycle accident, the motorcyclist is traveling less than 30 m.p.h. at the time of the crash

Motorcycle fatality statistics:

  • About 90% of motorcyclists killed in accidents are men
  • Nearly 60% of motorcycle fatalities occur between the months of May and September
  • Almost half of those deaths occur during weekends
  • 53% of motorcycle accidents occur in urban areas

Motorcycle injury/safety statistics:

  • Nearly half of all motorcycle accidents result in injuries to the lower extremities (thigh, knee, ankle, foot).
  • According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health, the most common cause of motorcycle fatalities is a head injury
  • Wearing a helmet reduces the risk of head injury by 69% and reduces motorcycle fatalities by 37%
  • 60% of riders involved in accidents were not wearing a helmet
  • 73% of riders involved in accidents were not wearing any protective eyewear

Research shows that these high rates of injuries and fatalities can be significantly reduced by wearing proper protective gear. However, even minor motorcycle accidents can result in property damage, injuries, and even fatalities, all of which can cost you and your family significant financial damages. 

What Are the Common Damages You Can Recover After A Motorcycle Accident?

Damages resulting from a motorcycle accident can range from minor property damage on your motorcycle to major medical expenses for bodily injuries. Most motorcycle accidents result in some sort of expense that you are responsible for paying. But what if you were not responsible for the accident?

If another motorcyclist, pedestrian, or driver of another vehicle was responsible for causing your accident in which you sustained property damage or were injured, you have a right to financial recovery from the person at fault. And your recovery can include the cost of a variety of damages. These may include:

Property damage.

Even if you are not injured in your accident, you still may be entitled to recover the cost of any damage sustained to your motorcycle or other property. The cost of the recovery could be the price of repairing or replacing the damaged parts of the bike, depending on the extent of the damage. Your recovery might include:

  • Damage to your motorcycle
  • Damage to any property you were carrying on your motorcycle, in your saddlebags, or on your person
  • Damage to any protective gear you were wearing, such as your helmet, protective footwear, jacket, eyewear, or gloves
  • Damage to the clothes you were wearing
  • Damages from physical injuries sustained in the accident.

Depending on the severity of the accident, you may recover any costs associated with any injuries you sustained. These may include the cost of:

  • Any necessary ambulance service at the scene of the accident
  • An initial medical exam if taken to the hospital
  • Any X-rays, MRIs, CAT-Scans, or other diagnostic tests
  • Any treatment necessary in the hospital
  • Staying in the hospital, if necessary
  • Any medical expenses, including doctor fees and medicines

Ongoing damages sustained after the accident:

If you are injured in your accident, there are always medical expenses associated with any injuries you sustained—for example, the expense of treating burns from road rash or putting a cast on your leg to treat a broken bone.

Often, however, injuries are more serious and recovery can take significant time. In some cases, you may not recover quickly or completely. If you can show that you sustained any ongoing expenses or long-term disability as a result of your accident, you may recover for such damages as well. These may include the cost of:

  • Follow-up doctor visits
  • Rehabilitation or physical therapy
  • Continued medicine
  • Lost pay for time spent out of work
  • Lost earning potential resulting from any long-term disability

You also can recover for any pain and suffering you experience as a result of your injuries or continued disability and loss of quality of life. Of course, all of these injuries must be proven and valued. For this, you will need an attorney experienced at evaluating the cause of your accident and the value of your damages based on other similar accidents and injuries.  

Why You Need an Experienced Motorcycle Accident Attorney

If you have sustained injuries in a motorcycle accident, you should contact an experienced motorcycle accident attorney right away. Don’t wait to see how long your injuries last or how quickly you recover. If someone else caused your accident, you may be entitled compensated for all of the damages described here. But proving these damages requires evidence that must be collected beginning at the scene of the accident and continuing through every doctor visit and medical procedure. It will require evaluating the cause of the accident and negotiating your compensation with insurance companies. It may require litigating your case in court. This can be a long and complicated process that occurs while you are trying to recover from your injuries. Let the experienced motorcycle accident attorneys at Foster Wallace, LLC, assist you with this process. 

At Foster Wallace, LLC, we have experience with motorcycle accident cases. We know the motorcycle laws of the state and have experience evaluating fault, collecting evidence, assessing damages, and negotiating with insurance companies. We specialize in litigating and settling motorcycle accident claims for injured clients. 

Brian Wallace
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Kansas City Personal Injury Attorney
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