Motorcycle Accident Statistics

Motorcyclists face greater risks than most drivers during accidents. The smaller size that a motorcycles has in proportion to a car and the exposed nature of the rider contributes to the higher possibility of fatal or serious injuries during an accident. Organizations like the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) have researched patterns regarding motorcycle accidents to combat fatalities. Traffic Safety Facts 2011 as reported by NHTSA stated that:

  • During weekdays most motorcyclists are killed from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. (530 motorcyclists) followed by 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. (375 motorcyclist). On the other hand, 79 motorcyclists were killed in between 3 a.m. to 6 a.m. for 2011.
  • During the weekend, 509 motorcyclists were killed during 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. and 365 were reported killed during 9 p.m. to midnight.
  • For injured motorcyclists, it was reported that accidents on weekday that occurred from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. is pegged at 14, 000 followed by 11,000 (12 noon to 3 p.m.) and 6,000 (9-12 noon and 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.)
  • During the weekend, 9000 motorcyclist were injured during 12 noon to 3 p.m., followed by 8,000 (3 p.m. to 6 p.m.) and 7,000 (6 p.m. to 9.pm.).
  • In 2011, 2405 riders who were killed were wearing helmets while 1707 riders killed were not wearing helmets at the time of the accident.
  • In the same year, 147 motorcycle passengers were wearing helmets when they were killed during an accident as compared to 156 passengers who were not wearing helmets at the time of an accident.
  • It was also reported that motorcyclists who were involved in an accident who were found not licensed by age group were: 30 motorcyclists (ages 25-34), 28 motorcyclists (16-20 years old), and 23 motorcyclists (35-44 years old).
  • Motorcyclists who had no valid license during the time of the accident were: 247 motorcyclists (ages 25-34), 202 motorcyclists (35-44 years of age), and 155 motorcyclists (45-54 years of age).
  • Motorcyclist with valid license during the accident were listed as 903 motorcyclists (45-54 years of age), 677 motorcyclists (35-44 years old), and 650 (55-64 years old).

Governors Highway Safety Association provided the 2011 preliminary data on motorcyclist traffic fatalities by state. Here are some of the interesting statistics found in this report:

  • In 2008, 35% of motorcycle riders involved in fatal crashes were speeding, compared to 23% for passenger car drivers and 19% for light truck drivers (NHTSA, 2009).
  • Helmets, when worn, prevent 37% of motorcycle operator fatal injuries in a crash and 41% of passenger fatal injuries.
  • In Utah, there was an increase of 6 motorcycle fatalities during 2011, which was considered lower than the average from the past years. No conclusive trend can be found with these small numbers.
  • In 2010, 29% of fatally injured motorcycle riders had a blood alcohol concentration above the legal limit of .08 (NHTSA, 2011a).
  • For the nine months up to September, both total fatalities and motorcycle fatalities are estimated to have decreased slightly. For the full year, NHTSA estimates that total traffic fatalities decreased about 1.7%.

Christensen & Hymas encourages all motorcyclists and drivers to be safe while operating a motor-vehicle. Accidents can be devastating and cause unforeseen consequences and heartache for everyone involved. to Further avoid accidents, motorcyclists are reminded to wear the proper reflective riding gear to be sure drivers are able to see them. In addition, motorcyclists should consider wearing a helmet to offer more protection during an accident. To read more about motorcycle accidents, read our article, “Motorcycle Accidents.

Image courtesy of fsHH and Pixabay. The image is free for commercial use.

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