Motorcycle accidents are frighteningly common, and they tend to be very devastating, severely injuring or killing people involved in the accident – especially those on the motorcycle, even if they’re wearing protective gear. Why is it that motorcycles are so uniquely prone to these devastating accidents? And what should you do if you’re involved in one?

Surviving a Motorcycle Accident


If you’re ever involved in a motorcycle accident, it’s important that you know what to do immediately:

  • Get to safety. The aftermath of an accident can be chaotic and shocking, but it’s important to keep your wits about you and get to safety as soon as possible. Get yourself to the side of the road and out of the way of moving vehicles.
  • Call an ambulance. When you’re somewhere safe, contact an ambulance for emergency medical care. Even if you don’t feel like you’re in much pain or don’t notice any injuries, you should recognize that this may be adrenaline masking your symptoms. Emergency medical care is still important.
  • File a police report. Gather as much evidence as you can and file a police report. This is going to serve as an official record of events, which you might need if you decide to take legal action later.
  • Talk to an attorney. Finally, talk to a motorcycle accident attorney such as as soon as possible. Your lawyer will help you understand the nature of the accident, the nature of your injuries, and whether you have a personal injury case on your hands.

The Frequency of Motorcycle Accidents


There are many reasons why motorcycle accidents occur with greater relative frequency than other vehicular accidents.

  • Blind spots. Motorcycles tend to be smaller and harder to notice than mainstream vehicles, which makes them even more vulnerable to blind spots. Drivers of conventional vehicles may focus on the road and check their mirrors often, but if they aren’t specifically looking for motorcycles, they may not be able to see them or react in time to a sudden event.
  • Small profiles. Even when motorcycles aren’t in blind spots, they still have relatively small profiles. They’re much harder to notice than bigger vehicles and, at times, are harder to avoid and maneuver around.
  • Agility and speed. Many people love riding motorcycles because of how agile and fast they can be. Testing your maximum acceleration and deftly weaving between vehicles is a lot of fun, but it also creates additional hazards and risks on roadways.
  • Performance. While many motorcycle accidents are attributable to drivers failing to see or respond to motorcyclists, there are some motorcycle accidents attributed to motorcycle enthusiasts showing off or otherwise operating their vehicles irresponsibly.
  • Vulnerability to maneuvering issues. In the hands of a skilled motorcyclist, no motorcycle is unconquerable. But for newcomers and with certain types of motorcycles, maneuvering issues can be a considerable challenge. Even a slight steering problem can snowball into an issue that makes an accident practically unavoidable.
  • Typical accident factors. Distracted driving took 3,522 lives in 2021 alone. Drunk driving is still a massive problem. And, of course, inclement weather can put anyone at risk of an accident. In addition to unique factors associated exclusively with motorcycles, motorcycles are vulnerable to a wide range of typical accident factors, compounding their risk profiles.

The Destruction of Motorcycle Accidents


Motorcycle accidents are also known for being incredibly deadly and destructive when they do happen.

  • Rider exposure. The most obvious factor for this is rider exposure. Unlike in a car, where riders are protected by seat belts, airbags, and an outer shell, many motorcycle riders have no immediately available form of protection.
  • Small frames. Motorcycles are also much smaller than trucks and large consumer vehicles, putting them at the receiving end of considerable force in many cases.
  • High speeds. It doesn’t help that motorcycle accidents also frequently happen at high speeds. The faster the collision, the more damage there is.

Preventing Motorcycle Accidents


Fortunately, there are many strategies that can help you prevent motorcycle accidents and minimize damage associated with them when they do happen.

  • Gear up. Proper protective gear on a motorcycle can be the difference between life and death. Make sure you’re at least wearing a helmet, and consider wearing full gear at all times.
  • Obey all traffic laws. Many accidents can be prevented simply by obeying traffic laws; these exist for a reason. Obeying the speed limit, following posted signage, and yielding to other drivers when warranted can prevent thousands of potential accidents.
  • Stay visible. Visibility is a major concern for motorcyclists, so do whatever you can to stay visible. Ride on the edges of lanes, wear reflective clothing to keep yourself more visible, and try to make your presence obvious to others on the road.
  • Avoid loose gravel. Loose gravel instantly makes conditions more hazardous for motorcyclists, so avoid it whenever possible.
  • Avoid inclement weather. Similarly, you should avoid inclement weather. Even small amounts of rain, snow, and hail can greatly increase your risk of an accident. Fog is potentially even more dangerous, since it complicates the existing visibility problem motorcyclists face.
  • Focus on the road. Keep your eyes on the road at all times – and be mindful of the drivers around you. You should be able to anticipate and avoid most dangerous situations (and long before you get involved in them).
  • Stay sober and alert. You need to remain sober and alert at all times on a motorcycle. That means more than simply “not drinking”; it also means avoiding riding when you’re especially tired or distraught.
  • When in doubt, slow down. If you’re ever in doubt about a situation, slow down and retain control of your motorcycle. Even in situations where you can’t prevent an accident, slowing down could help save your life.

If you’re ever involved in a motorcycle accident, do your best to remain calm and get to safety as soon as you can. After contacting emergency services and filing a police report, your next priority is contacting a lawyer in pursuit of a personal injury case.