Percentage Of Motorcycle Riders Who Crash

Last Updated on January 17, 2023 by Leepu Da Maxim

In recent years, a motorcyclist is 27 times more likely to be in an accident than the occupants of a car. For every 100,000 registered vehicles, motorcyclists who are in accidents are 59.34%.

List of USA States with Most Motorcyle Accidents

Name of the StateNumber of Accidents
North Carolina208

Reasons for Motorcycle Accidents in the USA

Some of the most common reasons for motorcycle accidents in the USA are –

  • Alcohol and drug impairment
  • Distracted driving
  • Reckless driving
  • Speeding
  • Road rage
  • Poor or impaired visibility
  • Drowsy or sleepy
  • Improper lane use, including lane splitting

Motorcycle Helmet Use – 2000 – 2019


5 Most Shocking Motorcycle Crashes Statistics

In the United States alone, there are more than 9 million motorcycles on the country’s roads. A lot of people enjoy riding this vehicle because of the incredible feeling and cost advantages. More and more people are looking forward to enjoying the sense of freedom and excitement that comes with riding a motorcycle of some kind.

However, it is not a very pleasant feeling when you realize that your life is at risk every moment. Even in the worst case when it is too late, the motorcyclists have already suffered some kind of serious or fatal accident. So, for you to stay alert, you must know the most important and shocking statistics when driving this vehicle.

While it is exciting to ride a motorcycle or join a motorcycle club, the reality can be more difficult than it seems. In general, an accident with a motorcycle is much more serious and dangerous than an accident with a car. Of course, a motorcycle has a lower balance, as well as a smaller vehicle that does not protect the driver.

Beginning drivers in particular take a lot of risks when they start driving without having completed the learning process. A motorcycle requires a much more complete learning process at first.

This training can be the main and strongest tool for safe riding. As you have better driving skills and more responsibility, you are more likely to have a serious, fatal accident.

1. Riders Are Much More Likely To Suffer Injuries Of Varying Severity Or Even Death

In this case, it is not simply an opinion of the people who are against or in favor of motorcycles. The higher probability of having an accident is based on several studies that have been conducted by insurance companies and other organizations. Most importantly, there are 29 times more likely to be a motorcyclist in an accident of some kind.

This 29-fold increase is only about fatal injuries. Additionally, injuries in my general population that are not fatal are also an important issue. With this type of injury, motorcyclists are 5 times more likely to suffer minor or serious injuries that do not result in death.

Even though it’s not that high a number, the truth is that no one wants to suffer any kind of serious or minor injury. Of course, the main reason is that motorcyclists have less protection when riding. The truth is, it’s not about irresponsible motorcyclists who hopefully only wear a motorcycle helmet.

In particular, you need to consider that a motorcyclist is protected by airbags, seat belts, the roof, doors, and increased vehicle stability. As you will notice, there are several safety aspects involved in protecting a motorist. In contrast, a motorcyclist does not have this amount of protection.

In some cases, motorcyclists may use some safety equipment. The most recommended in this case are leather jackets with armor inside, long leather pants, boots, and long sleeve-resistant shirts. Besides, the quality of the helmet is also very important to decrease the probability of fatal accidents.

Beyond that, all these objects fail to provide the same protection offered by airbags and seat belts of any car. In the case of a car traveling at a relatively low speed, this can be more than enough to cause great harm to a motorcyclist. In most cases, the motorcyclist will fly out of the vehicle and fall to the ground.

When motorcyclists fly out of their vehicles, there is a high probability that they will suffer a traumatic brain injury. Along with this, bone fractures, road rashes, and spinal cord damage can also occur. In turn, they can be crushed or immobilized if the same motorcycle falls right on top of them.

2. Several Motorcyclists Refuse To Wear Helmets

Those who don’t own a motorcycle may think motorcyclists take advantage of all the safety equipment because it’s not much. However, the reality is that very few people wear helmets when riding any type of motorcycle. So, if safety equipment is not enough for a motorcycle, it only makes things worse.

It is even estimated that only 50% to 70% of motorcyclists wear helmets. These percentages may vary from state to state and from region to region in various parts of the world. Beyond that, there is still a large number of people who do not wear helmets because of a slight feeling of discomfort while riding.

In turn, it is necessary to mention that 40% of the people who drove a motorcycle in 2017 died in some accident because they did not use a helmet. Therefore, although the chances of suffering a fatal accident increase, they continue to increase even more in the absence of a helmet.

So, not only is not wearing a helmet an irresponsible act, but it is also a truly dangerous decision. On some special occasions, the use of a helmet can increase or decrease. Of course, when it comes to long-distance travel, helmet use increases considerably. However, when it comes to a young or inexperienced rider, helmet use decreases dangerously.

Also, on a hot day or short trip, a rider may often decide not to wear a helmet. It is precisely in these situations that most deaths occur.

On the contrary, the least number of fatal traffic accidents occurs when the motorcyclist has all the safety equipment. So, if you have to make a long-distance trip or a trip of a few blocks you should always use your helmet at least.

3. More Than Half Of All Fatalities Occur In Older Motorcyclists

Contrary to what many people may think, most deaths do not occur in young, reckless motorcyclists. In particular, statistics have shown that older motorcyclists are the most likely to suffer fatal accidents of all motorcyclists in total.

Of course, one might think that older motorcyclists have more driving experience. While this may be true, it is not enough to prevent this type of fatal outcome. There is a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report that can prove this.

This report shows that in 2015, 54% of the motorcyclists who died in a crash were 40 years old or older. Taking into account statistics from 2006 onwards this age group increased by 17% in motorcycle accident deaths. So this is very important data to consider according to the age of each motorcyclist.

Here, some Brown University researchers have explained why this is so. As older motorcyclists get older, their riding skills decline. In particular, reaction time gets worse and is combined with decreased vision. 

Of course, both of these aspects are critical to avoid any kind of traffic accident. So these motorcyclists are less able to detect potential dangers and react correctly in time. Many motorcyclists even choose to buy much more powerful motorcycles over time.

This is done specifically because they consider these vehicles to be more reliable and stable. Contrary to what they believe, a faster motorcycle is more dangerous when the rider’s skills worsen. In principle, these issues are what cause a large number of fatal injuries and traffic accidents.

4. Many Motorists Are To Blame For Motorcycle Accidents

In several situations, many motorists are involved in motorcycle accidents. This means that 75% of all motorcycle accidents involve at least one car. Many times a motorist does not detect the motorcyclists in time.

Even many motorists do not have enough respect for motorcyclists at different times on the road. Moreover, only 25% of accidents involve a single motorcycle. Also, the rest of the hazards such as debris and potholes only account for 2% of accidents with a motorcycle. Among the most common causes of accidents, we can mention

a. Driver error

b. Turns too wide

c. Excess of speed

d. Driving with substance abuse

5. These Accidents Account For $16 Billion Per Year

Last but not least, some estimates have concluded with the number of motorcycle accidents. These include material losses, emergency medical services, additional medical expenses such as mental health counseling and rehabilitation, and production losses.

The production losses for each person who is absent from work are considerable. Besides, some long-term medical costs have not been included in this calculation. So, if you don’t intend to suffer some of these statistics you should have all the safety equipment and a high sense of responsibility to drive.