Understanding the risks and consequences of motorcycle accidents

On Behalf of | Mar 7, 2023 | Motor vehicle accidents |

In Connecticut, more than 50 motorcyclists lose their lives each year. Motorcycle fatalities represent more than 15% of fatalities in the United States. The fatality crash rate for motorcycles is six times that of passenger vehicles. The statistic is more sobering when considering that motorcycles only account for 0.6% of vehicle miles traveled.

Why are motorcycle accidents so dangerous?

A car has four wheels, making it more stable than a motorcycle. Motorcycles do not protect their occupants the same way a car does. No airbag, seatbelt, or roof protects and secures the rider.

If a motorcycle crashes or stops suddenly, the motion will continue to propel the rider at the speed they were traveling. The rider will collide with an object, or they will be thrown through the air, suffering severe injuries when they impact the ground.

Motorcycles have a weaker braking system than cars. Even if the rider applies the brakes, they can quickly spin out of control. Injuries sustained from sliding over concrete or asphalt can require urgent medical attention.

Body parts injured during motorcycle accidents

Motorcycle accidents typically affect the:

  • Lower extremities
  • Thorax
  • Head
  • Neck and face
  • Spine

In Connecticut, you are only required to use a motorcycle helmet if you are under 18 or operating a motorcycle with a learner’s permit. Head injuries are some of the most serious injuries a motorcyclist can suffer. Ranging from mild to severe, they can leave a person with permanent emotional, physical, and mental disabilities. In the worst-case scenario, head injuries can be fatal. Common head injuries include concussions, hemorrhaging, seizures, and paralysis.

Motorcyclists can’t prevent all accidents. However, it is possible to mitigate accidents and their severity by wearing the appropriate gear, taking education and safety classes, and riding a motorcycle defensively.