Motorcycle Accident Statistics
Motorcycles have a reputation for being one of the most dangerous types of vehicles on the road, but are they getting a fair rap? Although motorcycles offer many distinct features that riders find fun and freeing, there are characteristics that make them more dangerous than trucks, cars, and other passenger vehicles.
Motorcycle accident attorney Lynn C. Harris has represented many riders from the Salt Lake City, UT, and Provo, UT, area who have been injured in motorcycle crashes. Here, he presents motorcycle accident statistics that illustrate how the dangers of motorcycles compare to that of other vehicles, as well as the reasons that motorcycle accident injuries and fatalities are such a risk.
How Common Are Motorcycle Accidents?
Each year the Utah Department of Public Safety’s Highway Safety Office creates a Crash Summary Statistics Report. The report analyzes the number and types of crashes that have taken place in the state. According to data collected for 2020, the state of Utah had a total of 51,630 crashes during that year.
Looking at the state’s data for motorcycle crashes, the numbers do not initially seem very alarming. During 2020, Utah reported that just around 2 percent of the state’s yearly crashes involved motorcycles. While this number seems relatively low, it doesn’t really paint the whole picture.
Motorcycle Accident Injuries and Fatalities
Looking at motorcycle accident data regarding injuries and crashes, it is clear that motorcycles do pose a significant threat to riders, passengers, and other drivers. While there were only 1,077 total motorcycle crashes in Utah during 2020, 1,018 resulted in injuries. That means that nearly 95 percent of motorcycle crashes resulted in injuries. To put that into further perspective, just 15,899, or nearly 31 percent, of the state’s total crashes for the year resulted in injuries.
Data for fatal accidents in Utah during 2020 also highlights the dangers of motorcycle crashes. In 2020, the total number of motorcycle related fatalities was 45; of these, 20 were among individuals who were riding on the motorcycle. Statistically, this means that 16.3 percent of Utah’s deaths from motor vehicle crashes were motorcycle-related.
Dangers of Motorcycle Accidents
The disproportionate number of motorcycle crash injuries and fatalities in relation to the number of accidents involving other vehicles demonstrates that motorcycles do have features that make them more dangerous in the event of a collision. Most notably, motorcycles lack many of the key safety features that other types of vehicles provide, such as seat belts, air bags, and a protective steel frame.
To make up for the lack of safety features, motorcyclists should wear appropriate safety gear, including riding boots, leather gloves, leather jacket and pants, and a motorcycle helmet. A helmet is especially important. Utah’s 2020 accident data showed that motorcyclists who were not wearing a helmet at the time of a crash were 1.6 times more likely to have fatal injuries than those who did.
Motorcycle accidents do not just result in injuries and fatalities, but often emotional and financial damages as well. If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident, attorney Lynn C. Harris can help you hold liable parties accountable for your losses. To schedule a free case review, send us a message online or call our Salt Lake City law firm at (801) 521-3200.