Are Motorcycles Dangerous?

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motorcycle danger

Michiganders love motorcycling for many reasons: a more refreshing ride, the freedom of the road, fuel efficiency, and more. But the joys of riding also come with drawbacks. When motorcyclists are involved in collisions, they’re much more likely to sustain serious injuries.

As bikers know, accidents often have more to do with the way other drivers react to motorcycles than with the inherent risks of motorcycling itself. Regardless, it’s important to be aware of the dangers. Keep reading to learn more about the hazards involved in riding a motorcycle in Michigan.

Motorcycle Accident Statistics

Here are a few sobering statistics about motorcycle accidents in Michigan and around the country:

  • Crash data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) show there were 5,014 motorcyclists killed and about 84,000 motorcyclists injured in U.S. accidents in 2019.
  • NHTSA data also found that motorcyclists died at a rate of 58.18 people per 100,000 registered vehicles. Injuries occurred at a rate of 945 people per 100,000 registered vehicles. By contrast, the fatality rate for passenger cars was much lower at 9.70, while the injury rate was slightly higher at 1,137.
  • Statistics from the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning show that motorcycle fatalities rose 24.5 percent in 2020.
  • A report from the Michigan State Police shows there were 2,809 total motorcycle accidents in 2019. Of those collisions, 120 involved at least one fatality and 2,047 resulted in an injury.

Challenges for Motorcyclists

Challenges for Motorcyclists in MichiganPopular stereotypes would have you believe that motorcyclists are more dangerous and aggressive than other drivers. Instead, the physical characteristics of motorcycles and the hazards motorcyclists face on the roads make them more dangerous.

Some of the dangers involved in riding a motorcycle include:

  • Less visibility: Motorcycles are smaller and thinner than passenger cars and large trucks, making them harder to see. This is especially true when vehicles are moving at high speeds.
  • Oncoming traffic: If a car or another larger vehicle drifts into the path of an oncoming motorcycle, the rider may not have time to avoid a devastating head-on collision.
  • Cars waiting to turn: Drivers often misjudge the amount of time available to safely make a turn in front of a motorcycle. Errors in timing can result in deadly T-bone accidents.
  • Panic stops: Sometimes, a motorcyclist must stop suddenly due to an unexpected hazard, such as an opening car door, road debris, or a car making an unsafe lane change. So-called “panic stops” may cause bikers to lose control of their motorcycles.

Talk to an Experienced Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

If you’ve been hurt in a Michigan motorcycle collision, you need an experienced lawyer to explain the state’s unique laws regarding compensation. Turn to Christensen Law. With four locations across Michigan, our motorcycle accident lawyers are ready to help whenever and wherever you need us. Call or visit our contact page today to schedule your free initial consultation.