When you look at crash statistics, you will find that motorcycles are far more dangerous than passenger cars. A motorcyclist is four times as likely to be injured in a crash and a massive 24 times as likely to pass away in the event of a crash than a driver in a passenger vehicle. Many motorcycle accidents are caused by other drivers, not motorcyclists themselves, so motorcyclists cannot entirely avoid the risk of sustaining harm when riding.
Why is the risk of riding-related harm so great? Motorcycles are considered more dangerous than cars for several reasons, primarily due to their design and the inherent risks associated with riding them.
Lack of protection
Motorcycles provide minimal protection compared to cars. While cars have a sturdy metal frame, airbags, crumple zones, seat belts and other safety features, motorcycles offer little to no physical protection for riders in the event of a collision. Riders can wear helmets and protective suits, but these still offer nothing close to the level of protection provided by a car.
Vulnerability in crashes
Additionally, motorcyclists themselves are more vulnerable to life-changing injuries or fatalities in accidents. In a crash, riders can easily be thrown from their motorcycles or collide with other vehicles, road obstacles or the pavement itself. This exposes them to a higher risk of severe injuries, including head injuries and fractures. A motorcycle accident may be far less contained than a car accident.
Because of their small size, motorcycles are harder to spot on the road than cars. This reduced visibility can make it more difficult for other drivers to spot motorcyclists, increasing the risk of accidents, especially at intersections. Many serious motorcycle crashes happen when drivers turn left in front of them and later claim they never saw the bike at all.
Hazards on the road
Road conditions matter more to motorcycles. They can be dramatically affected by loose gravel, road debris and potholes, just to name three examples. These hazards can directly cause a crash through the loss of control or greater instability on the bike. Weather events also have a greater impact on safety for motorcyclists – this includes adverse weather conditions such as rain, snow, and high winds. Poor weather can reduce traction and visibility.
Unfortunately, understanding the risks doesn’t prevent all accidents. Those who have been seriously injured or lost loved ones need to know what legal steps to take to seek compensation from any at-fault parties. Seeking legal guidance is a good way to benefit from this kind of clarity.