Motorcycle Driver & Passenger

While many riders find freedom in motorcycling, the same thing that brings riders joy and freedom can also put them at risk of severe harm. Motorcycle accidents are extremely common. Although motorcycles make up only 3% of all registered vehicles in the US, they account for at least 14% of all traffic fatalities. This number doesn’t include accidents that result in non-fatal injuries or accidents that weren’t reported to the police.  

If you’re a motorcycle rider or are interested in motorcycling, you may wonder what percent of motorcycle accidents result in injury or death. Unfortunately, the percentage of motorcyclists who have accidents resulting in severe injuries and death is high. Below, TonaLaw provides concerned motorcyclists and drivers with information regarding motorcycle accident fatalities and injuries. If you’re looking at this article about what percent of motorcycle accidents result in injury or death because you’ve been in an accident, contact an experienced personal injury attorney like our Long Island attorneys today.

What Percent of Motorcycle Accidents Result in Injury or Death in the United States?

Our New York personal injury attorneys know that many motorcycle accidents that result in injury or death go unreported. Nonetheless, the information on what percent of motorcycle accidents result in injury or death can give riders and drivers a clearer picture of the prevalence of motorcycling accidents. We hope drivers and riders can use this information to make better choices on the road. 

Motorcycle Accidents Resulting in Death in the US

Unfortunately, motorcyclists are overrepresented in traffic fatalities in the U.S. The percentage of motorcyclists who have accidents resulting in death is very high. According to data from the

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 5,579 motorcyclists were killed in 2020, an 11% increase from 2019. Motorcycle accident-related deaths represented 14% of all traffic fatalities in 2020. Of those fatalities, 94% were riders, while only 6% were passengers. Despite the low percentage of passenger fatalities in motorcycle fatalities, motorcycle crashes accounted for 18% of all passenger fatalities. 

Motorcyclists were 28% more likely to die in crashes than passenger vehicle occupants per mile traveled in 2020. The NHTSA noted that this rate of motorcycle fatalities represents the highest rate since it began collecting traffic-related fatality information in 1975.  

Motorcycle Accidents with Resulting Injuries in the US

Unsurprisingly, the reported injury rate for motorcyclists is also high. The NHTSA estimates that there were 82,528 motorcyclists injured in 2020. According to the NHTSA data, the reported injury rate for motorcyclists was four times higher than that of passenger car or light truck occupants. However, this number only represents reported injuries and does not account for unreported motorcycle accidents.

It’s nearly impossible to accurately state the percentage of motorcyclists who have accidents resulting in injuries. Many times, if the motorcyclist’s injuries were minor, or if the accident that resulted in injuries didn’t involve another vehicle, the rider may not have reported the injury or accident to the police. Thus, motorcycle accidents resulting in injury are underreported and are generally only accounted for in estimates.  

What Percent of Motorcycle Accidents Result in Injury or Death in New York?

New York has a reputation for difficult driving conditions. Much of downstate New York is highly populated with New York City and its relatively urban suburbs. Being that our firm is located on densely populated Long Island, many of you may be wondering specifically the percentage of motorcyclists who have accidents resulting in death or injury in New York.

Unfortunately, motorcycle injuries and fatalities have increased in New York similar to how they increased on a national scale. According to the Institute for Traffic Safety Management and Research (ITSMR) at the University of Albany’s Rockefeller College, in 2021, fatal motorcycle crashes increased by 50% in New York. Further 2021 data showed that 198 fatal motorcycle crashes killed 204 people. Motorcycle-related fatalities accounted for over 18% of all motor vehicle fatalities in the state.

If you ride in New York City, you are even more at risk. New York City’s Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) reported that the rate of motorcyclist accident-related deaths in the City is almost twice the rate of motorcycle accident deaths in the rest of New York state. This number aligns with the national statistic reported by the NHTSA that 61% of all motorcycle fatalities occurred in urban areas.

Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries

A motorcyclist has very little protection against the outside world. Thus, when a motorcyclist is in a crash with another vehicle or has an accident because of a road hazard, the rider can experience severe and often life-threatening injuries. A motorcyclist in a collision may sustain multiple injuries, including:

  • Head injuries like concussions,
  • Road rash,
  • Broken bones,
  • Neck or spinal injuries,
  • Lacerations,
  • Muscle tears,
  • Internal organ damage, and
  • Death.

A permanent or long-term injury may affect the motorcyclist’s life and the lives of their family members for many years. 

Top Causes of Motorcycle Accident Injuries

You may wonder what dangers to avoid as a motorcyclist after learning about the percent of motorcyclists who have accidents. Although the causes of motorcycle accidents vary, some of the common causes of motorcycle accidents include:

  • Speeding,
  • Reckless driving or riding,
  • Riding or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol,
  • Unlicensed or inexperienced rider,
  • Road hazards,
  • Mechanical failures on the motorcycle,
  • Inclement weather, and
  • Distracted driving.

This list is not exhaustive. There are many other causes of motorcycle accidents. Speak with one of our attorneys if you believe someone’s negligence caused your accident, even if the cause isn’t listed above.

Contact Our Office for a New York Motorcycle Accident Claim

Motorcyclists in New York face a high risk of death or injury on the road. Sometimes, there’s nothing you as a motorcyclist can do to prevent a motorcycle accident. However, another driver’s negligence can often cause a motorcycle accident with dire consequences. The high percent of motorcyclists who have accidents, results in part from someone’s negligence or recklessness on the road.

If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident, or if your loved one died in a motorcycle accident, you may be able to recover compensation. The motorcycle accident attorneys at TonaLaw are highly skilled litigators who have gone toe-to-toe with insurance companies and other at-fault parties on behalf of clients like you. We believe in fighting for justice for all of our clients. Contact us today.

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