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Donald W. Bedell
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Uncovering the most common causes of motorcycle accidents

On Behalf of | Jul 24, 2023 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

Motorcycle riding offers an exhilarating blend of freedom, speed and adventure, appealing to individuals seeking a break from the routine. However, this liberating experience comes with its risks.

Recognizing and avoiding these common dangers can substantially reduce the risk of accidents, making the riding experience more secure and enjoyable.

Alcohol and drug use

Driving under the influence is a major risk factor for motorcycle accidents. According to the NHTSA, almost 30% of bikers involved in fatal accidents exhibit blood-alcohol concentrations over the legal limit. Alcohol impairs judgment, coordination and reaction time, which are critical for safe riding.


High speeds amplify the risks involved in motorcycle riding. Around 31% of fatal motorcycle crashes in the U.S. involve speeding. Excessive speed hinders a rider’s ability to adapt to changing road conditions and react to unforeseen circumstances.

Inexperience and inattention

Nearly 29% of all motor fatalities involve unlicensed riders, signifying the dangers of inexperience. Along with this, inattention is a significant issue affecting both new and experienced riders. Multitasking while riding is risky; keeping distractions at bay is a must.

Weather conditions

Weather changes and seasons impact road conditions, making it challenging for riders. Be it rainstorms affecting traction and visibility or warm weather causing tire traction issues on painted roads, each season brings its challenges.

Roadway conditions

Poorly lit roads, hidden driveways, potholes, unmarked lane changes and low-hanging branches are some roadway conditions that can pose risks to motorcyclists. Staying vigilant and adopting a proactive approach toward identifying potential hazards can save lives.

Left turns

Left-turn accidents, often leading to “T-bone” collisions, are a leading cause of motorcycle accidents. Drivers often fail to notice motorcyclists due to inattentional blindness, resulting in tragic collisions.

Distracted drivers

With the rise of technology, distractions on the road have escalated. Distracted driving is now a significant risk factor for motorcycle accidents. To counteract this risk, riders should invest in highly visible gear and maintain a safe distance from other vehicles.

Roadway users and traffic threats

Sudden stops, lane changes and unexpected car door openings can cause serious harm to bikers. By being agile and responsive, motorcyclists can avoid many traffic threats.

Riding a motorcycle comes with its share of risks, but by understanding these common causes of accidents and taking proactive steps, riders can make their journey safer and more enjoyable.