How Common Are Motorcycle Accidents — and How Can You Stay Safe on a Long Motorcycle Trip?

How Common Are Motorcycle Accidents

Motorcycles may be less common on American roadways, but they cast a far larger shadow.

According to the National Safety Council, while only 3% of registered vehicles are motorbikes, a disproportionate 14% of all deadly crashes involve them.

For riders, the open road brings heightened thrills—and, sadly, heightened risks too. Though far fewer in number, their smaller, exposed frames render motorcyclists vulnerable when wrecks occur.

The data highlights an ironic freedom these vehicles represent: liberating for enjoyable rides yet entrapping riders in statistical tragedy.

Biker motorcycle road

Still, dedicated bikers around the country accept these realities, preferring to savor the rush of the ride over dwelling on the potential falls.

Furthermore, accidents seem to be on the rise. From 2020 to 2021, the number of fatalities among both motorcyclists and their passengers increased by 8%.

Plus, the number of nonfatal injuries during the same time period increased by 5%.

More worrying, over the last ten years, death rates of motorcyclists and their passengers have increased by 29%.

Contact a Lawyer if You Are Hit by a Car While Motorcycling

If you are a motorcyclist, it is imperative that you stay safe when on the road, whether during a short trip to the local store or a long trip over several days.

But if you are involved in an accident, such as being hit by a car, and the accident is not your fault, make sure you consult a personal injury lawyer.

With the assistance of the motorcycle accident lawyers, for example, you could pursue compensation for damages such as income loss, healthcare bills, and physical or emotional distress.

How to Stay Safe on a Long Motorcycle Trip

By proactively taking steps to stay safe on a long road trip, you can significantly reduce the risk of being injured in an accident.

So, here are some great tips to help you stay safe.

Prepare Your Motorcycle

Before heading out on a long motorcycle trip:

  1. Ensure that your bike is in peak condition.
  2. Check the tires for appropriate pressure and tread depth.
  3. Examine the brakes, lights, and all fluid levels to confirm they are functioning properly.

Dress Safety-Conscious

Being visible on the road is a crucial factor for your safety. Opt for bright-colored clothing and reflective gear so other motorists can easily spot you. Also, always wear a helmet with a visor to protect from wind and debris while enhancing visibility.

Stay Hydrated and Well-fed

Physical fitness plays an important role during long trips. Start your day with a balanced meal and stay hydrated throughout your ride. You can then stay alert. But avoid heavy meals, as they might make you drowsy.

Mind Your Riding Attitude

Avoid aggressive riding habits such as speeding or weaving between lanes, which make it hard for drivers to predict your actions or give space if needed on the roadways’ cramped spaces. Stay alert and focused, and always respect the rules of the road.

Take Regular Breaks

Long rides can result in fatigue, which in turn can reduce reaction time and impair decision-making skills. Therefore, it is essential to take regular breaks during your trip. These stops will not only rest your body but also refresh your mind.

Engage in Defensive Riding

It is important not to assume that other drivers will see you or anticipate your actions on the road. So, drive defensively by maintaining safe distances from vehicles and anticipating potential hazards before they occur.

Maintain Safe Speeds

While riding, make sure to maintain a safe speed at all times. The faster you go, the less time you will have to react if something unexpected happens. Observing speed limits is not just a legal obligation – it can literally save lives.

Stay Alert at Intersections

Intersections are notorious hotspots for accidents. When approaching one, stay particularly alert and aware of your surroundings. Observe the traffic lights diligently and look out for oncoming vehicles from all sides before proceeding.

Avoid Tailgating

Lastly, keep in mind that motorcycles need just as much distance to stop as other vehicles do, if not more – so ensure ample space between you and the vehicle up ahead always.

In congested traffic or bad weather conditions, increase this distance even further to give yourself extra braking room.

Final Thoughts

motorcycle speeding

While motorcycle travel allows you to see places from an exciting new perspective, the risks involved are all too real. As discussed, motorcycle accidents occur far more frequently per mile traveled than car accidents, often leading to severe or fatal injuries.

However, knowledge is power when it comes to safety. By educating yourself on accident statistics, being aware of the most common causes of motorcycle crashes, following best practices for gear and visibility, and planning routes with safety stops in mind, you greatly increase your odds of an incident-free trip.

Experienced riders also advise maintaining focus, driving defensively, and assuming you’re invisible to other motorists at all times.

Apply this advice to make safety your priority before hitting the open road on a motorcycle adventure for the memories of a lifetime.

Respect the machine, respect the route, and return home with stories to tell instead of regrets.

Your diligence in preparation and focus while riding could make all the difference should an unforeseen situation arise.

With the right approach, you can manage the risks and immerse yourself in the pure freedom that motorcycle travel offers.

Here’s to a safe, exhilarating trip ahead!

Don’t Miss Our Stories
Enter your e-mail below and sign up for our newsletter

I have read and agree to the terms and conditions