Motorcycle Accident Injuries
Motorcycle Accident Injuries – There are many different forms of transportation that people use to travel around town, go to work, and attend school, however, one theme remains constant: safety first. When people ride a motorcycle, there are many different risks that they take on. Because bikes do not provide the same protection as the standard motor vehicle, the risk of injury is significantly higher than it would be otherwise. Recently, the updated Crash Stats for 2016 were published by the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA- Released in February of 2018). Some of the pertinent findings from their database include:
- In 2016, there were close to 5,300 motorcycle riders killed.
- This represents a 5 percent increase from the total in 2015.
- By the fatality per mile statistic, motorcycle accidents were almost 30-times as fatal as the standard auto accident.
- More than 25 percent of motorcycle riders who were killed did not have a valid license to ride a motorcycle.
- The same percentage of riders involved in motorcycle accidents were found to be impaired by alcohol.
- This is a higher percentage than any other motor vehicle.
- According to the NHTSA, close to 2,000 motorcycle riders had their lives saved by a helmet.
- Another 800 could have been saved if they had worn a helmet at the time of their accident.
Motorcycle accident injuries are always serious and can result in death. Helmets should always be worn because they prove to be lifesaving. It is also important for everyone to make sure that they are not impaired before they decide to get on a motorcycle. These studies aren’t rare. Recently, a large, comprehensive study was published that examined multiple facets of motorcycle accidents, injuries, and fatalities. Their findings are significant and warrant further discussion.
A Review: Motorcycle Accidents and Injuries
A group of trained research professionals collected all the records on motorcycle accidents and injuries that came through a local hospital. There are multiple electronic databases where this information is stored that these researchers mined for data. They collected the data, categorized it, and ran statistical analyses on it to draw conclusions. Some of the pertinent findings from the research study are listed below.
Motorcycle Accidents: General Statistics
The researchers broke down the motorcycle fatalities into numerous categories. Overall, the researchers found data on about 1,250 riders who were either injured or killed in motorcycle accidents during the study period. They found that:
- The injury severity score, based on objective criteria, averaged about an eight out of a possible ten.
- About 3 percent of riders in the study were killed.
- 80 percent of bikers in the research was wearing a helmet.
- Close to two-thirds of the riders who had an accident were riding a motorcycle with a smaller engine (less than 1,000 ccs).
- Half of the accidents involved a collision with another vehicle.
- A rider overturned their motorcycle in about 10 percent of accidents.
- Around a quarter of the motorcycle riders collided with a fixed object, such as a parked vehicle.
The researchers also broke down these statistics by age. Overall, older riders were more likely than younger riders to wear a helmet. However, older riders also had a higher injury severity score on average. Furthermore, despite the difference in injury severity score, the mortality rate was higher in younger riders. This could likely be attributed to a lower helmet usage rate. Furthermore, accidents that involved a collision with a fixed object or a motor vehicle were more likely to lead to injuries or death.
Helmet Use and Motorcycle Accidents: Results
The researchers also proceeded to break down the injury statistics based on the presence or absence of a helmet. As predicted, helmet use led to a markedly decreased rate of head, face, and neck injuries. According to the researchers:
- Helmet use was charted as “worn” in about 900 of the motorcycle riders.
- It was charted as “absent” in about 200 riders.
- Head injuries were present in about 35 percent of people who were not wearing a helmet.
- Head injuries were present in about 25 percent of people who were wearing a helmet.
- Face or neck injuries were present in about a third of people who were not wearing a helmet.
- Face or neck injuries were present in about 20 percent of people who were wearing a helmet.
- About a quarter of people overall suffered a head injury.
- Around 20 percent of riders suffered face or neck injury.
- A similar percentage of riders suffered an injury to the chest, which could damage the heart or lungs.
- Around 10 percent of riders suffered an injury of the spinal cord, which could lead to paralysis.
- About 20 percent of people suffered injuries to the abdomen, which can harm the liver or spleen.
- Injuries of the arms, which could include the radius, ulna, or humerus, were seen in about 50 percent of cases.
- Injuries to the legs, such as bone fractures of the femur, fibula, or tibia, were seen in around two-thirds of accidents.
These statistics are helpful because they demonstrate that even though broken legs are common, they aren’t necessarily the most severe injury that a rider might sustain. Head, neck, and spinal cord injuries have the potential to cause serious long-term complications or even death. Therefore, it is vital that those who ride a motorcycle take the time to put safety first every time they ride.
Safety Tips for Riding a Motorcycle: Prevention is Effective
Based on the information listed above, it is clear that motorcycle accidents are still a serious problem and can lead to major injuries. Because of this, there are some safety tips that people must keep in mind to stay safe when riding a motorcycle. These include:
- Remember to wear a helmet every time the key is turned because it could prevent a traumatic brain injury or save a life.
- Speed limits are posted for a reason, and they must be followed.
- Be alert of other drivers as well as other obstacles on the road such as construction equipment, car doors, and parking meters.
- Try not to ride during poor weather conditions such as thunderstorms, blizzards, and fog.
Unfortunately, not every accident can be prevented, and there are times when serious motorcycle accident injuries occur. During these times, it is imperative that people turn to a Sacramento motorcycle accident attorney for help.
- Sudden Emergency Doctrine with Motorcycle Accidents
- Injuries to Passengers on Motorcycles
- Brain Injuries, Personality Changes, and Motorcycle Accidents
- Risk of Riding a Motorcycle vs. Driving a Motor Vehicle
Motorcycle Accident Attorneys in Sacramento
I’m Ed Smith, a Motorcycle Accident Attorney in Sacramento. Motorcycle accidents can lead to devastating injuries. If you or a loved one has suffered injuries in a car accident, call me at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400 for free, friendly legal advice.
I am a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum.
To learn more about my firm and see how we settled our past cases, visit:
Motorcycle Accident Injuries: AutoAccident.com
Image Attribution: The photo at the start of this article is seen in its original form on Unsplash. The image has been reproduced here with permission/ Motorcycle Accident Injuries.
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