While car accidents are certainly dangerous and lethal, motorcycle accidents are exponentially hazardous. With no seat belt strapping the driver in, or a protective steel cage keeping passengers secure, motorcycle accidents pose a significant threat to all those involved. It is no surprise that motorcycles are involved in 11 percent of all traffic accidents, or that motorcyclists are 35 times more likely to die in a traffic accident than car passengers.
Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
There are numerous potential causes of motorcycle accidents, many no different than those of any other traffic accident. Some of the most common causes for motorcycle accidents include:
- Lane splitting: When a motorcycle maneuvers between stopped or slowly moving cars, injuries often occur due to car drivers being unaware and the close proximity of the motorcycle to the cars.
- Cars turning left: Accounting for 42 percent of all motorcycle accidents, cars making left hand turns often do not see the motorcyclist. This is particularly dangerous if the motorcyclist is going straight through the intersection or attempting to pass or overtake the car.
- Road hazards: Motorcycles are less stable and smaller than cars, and thus are more susceptible to potholes, roadkill, slick or frozen roads, and other potential hazards.
Many other causes of motorcycle accidents exist, and often they are fatal to the driver. Non-fatal injuries are still very severe, and most commonly include:
- Road rash: When a motorcyclist falls off his or her bike when traveling at high speeds, impact with the road will cause serious scrapes and abrasions. These abrasions often tear off the skin completely, and occasionally affect the bones as well.
- Fractures: Collisions with cars usually cause fractures to arms and legs. More severe bone breaks are also common.
- Spinal cord or brain injury: Undoubtedly the most dangerous, these injuries can lead to paralysis or death. High speed collisions may result in a head or neck injury if the biker is thrown from the bike or receives the full impact of a car.