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Motorcycle Accident Statistics Don’t Look Very Good


You can just see with your own eyes why a motorcycle accident is different from a car accident that involves two cars. Those differences that you see bear out the statistics of motorcycle accidents, which paint a grim picture for those who enjoy motorcycles.

Fatalities on the Rise

The number of people killed in motorcycle accidents has gone up consistently since 1975, even during the COVID related shutdowns of 2020. And although only 3% of all registered motor vehicles are motorcycles, motorcycle fatalities make up 15% of all crashes that involve deaths—an extraordinarily high percentage, considering how few cycles there are overall on the roads.

License is Needed

Many people aren’t aware that you cannot just jump on a motorcycle and be able to ride it legally, just because you have a normal driver’s license. You must specifically have a license to ride a motorcycle, or else, have a motorcycle endorsement on your normal driver’s license.

Sadly, many people ignore this requirement, and it is estimated that over 35% of all motorcycle accidents happen to those who do not have the proper license to drive or operate a cycle.

Use of Helmets

For adult drivers, as of 2020, there is no law requiring that riders use helmets. But that’s a deadly risk—according to one study, over 2,000 deaths in one year happened to riders who were on cycles without helmets.

Remember that if you don’t wear a helmet, even if you aren’t legally required to do so on a motorcycle, a jury can still blame you for your own injuries, if someone else injures you while on a motorcycle.

Speed and Alcohol

There is a stereotype of the careless motorcyclist who speeds everywhere and drives recklessly. While this does not bear out statistically, the statistics do show that excessive speed plays a role in many fatal motorcycle accidents. About 33% of all motorcycle fatalities happened when the cycle was being driven in excess of the posted speed limit.

A quarter of motorcycle accidents also involved impaired driving or the user being under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the accident.

When Do They Happen?

Time of day and time of year play a role as well. Statistically the most motorcycle accidents happen during summer months, although that is a national statistic—the number in Florida is likely more even all year round, given that you can ride a motorcycle all year in Florida’s climate.

And while rain makes driving any vehicle more dangerous, there were fewer motorcycle accidents during rain, which makes sense, given that most riders won’t be on an open motorcycle when the weather is bad.

The evenings on weekends saw the most deaths on motorcycles, usually between the hours of 6pm-9pm. During weekdays, the time frame with the most accidents was a little earlier, likely accounting for rush hour traffic, with the time frame of 3pm-6pm seeing the most accidents.

Were you injured on a motorcycle? We can help. Contact the Tampa personal injury lawyers at Barbas, Nunez, Sanders, Butler & Hovsepian and schedule a consultation today for your free initial consultation.


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