How to Avoid the Most Common Motorcycle Accidents
How to Avoid the Most Common Motorcycle Accidents

Do you know what the most common motorcycle accidents are, and how to avoid them?

Motorcycle accidents injure and kill thousands of riders every year. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 4,668 motorcyclists died and 88,000 were injured in motorcycle accidents in 2013. Per vehicle mile traveled, motorcyclist fatalities occur 26 times more frequently than passenger car occupant fatalities.

Here are the most common motorcycle accidents and how to avoid them:

  1. Roughly 42% of all motorcycle vs. vehicle accidents occur when the vehicle turns left in front of the motorcycle. These are the most common types of accidents and they can be very dangerous for the rider. These accidents can be difficult to avoid, as they are dependent on the other driver’s actions. However, if you notice warning signs, such as a car waiting to turn at an upcoming intersection—especially if there is a gap in the traffic in front of you—take caution. That driver might decide to turn, putting you in harm’s way.
  2. Another common type of motorcycle accident occurs when a vehicle comes into the motorcyclist’s lane. This might happen because the driver is not paying enough attention, or because the motorcycle is in the driver’s blind spot. To avoid this type of accident, do your best to stay out of others’ blind spots. Also be aware of signs that a vehicle is getting ready to change lanes, such as turning on turn signals, and checking their mirrors and blind spots.
  3. In a majority of fatal motorcycle vs. vehicle accidents, the motorcycle and vehicle collide head-on. The National Safety Council (NSC) recommends “Four R’s” for avoiding a head-on collision. Those are:
    1. Read the road ahead. Scan the road ahead for any upcoming hazards.
    2. Drive to the right. There is less risk of a head-on collision if you travel in the right lane.
    3. Reduce your speed. If you notice an oncoming vehicle swerving or otherwise driving recklessly, slow down.
    4. Ride off the road. If an oncoming vehicle swerves into your lane, slow down and merge onto the shoulder or grass to the right to avoid crashing.
  4. Accidents often occur when motorcyclists split lanes. Lane splitting increases the proximity of the vehicle and motorcycle, and it reduces the space the motorcycle has to maneuver out of the way. Drivers are also not expecting a motorcyclist to pass them while they are traveling slowly in traffic, so the lack of awareness can lead to an accident. If you choose to split traffic, only do so when you are sure you have enough room to safely get through. Be aware of vehicles that might be getting ready to change lanes.
  5. In 2014, 30% of fatal motorcycle accidents involved a rider who was under the influence of alcohol. Motorcyclists should never drink and ride.

“Motorcyclists are far less protected than other motorists on the road, leaving them very vulnerable to injury in an accident. If you ride a motorcycle, be sure to practice these safe driving habits to avoid accidents,” said Attorney Walter Clark, founder of Walter Clark Legal Group.

Our firm has been handling personal injury cases throughout the California Low Desert and High Desert communities for over 30 years. With a 95% success rate, the California personal injury attorneys at Walter Clark Legal Group will fight to hold those responsible for your loss accountable and win compensation to cover medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident and want to discuss your legal options, contact us today for a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer. We have offices in Indio, Rancho Mirage, Victorville, and Yucca Valley and represent clients through the entire California Low Desert and High Desert communities.

DISCLAIMER: The Walter Clark Legal Group blog is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended as legal or medical advice. References to laws are based on general legal practices and vary by location. Information reported comes from secondary news sources. We do handle these types of cases, but whether or not the individuals and/or loved ones involved in these accidents choose to be represented by a law firm is a personal choice we respect. Should you find any of the information incorrect, we welcome you to contact us with corrections.

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