Motorcycles are fun to ride, but they can also be dangerous. They’re smaller than other vehicles, and their riders are exposed to the elements. Statistics show that motorcycles are more likely to be involved in an accident than other types of vehicles
While inevitable circumstances may lead to motorcycle accidents, knowing their common causes can equip you to stay safe. Here are eight of those culprits:
1. Speeding And Negligent Driving
Speeding and negligent driving are major contributors to motorcycle accidents. According to statistics, 31% of fatal motorcycle crashes involve speeding. In this case, driving within the speed limit is crucial.
Speeding can lead to loss of control. Motorcycles are more difficult to stop than other vehicles, so going faster than the speed limit increases the chances of crashing.
If you, a friend, or your family has been involved in a motorcycle accident in Utah or anywhere in the country, it’s best to call a lawyer to recover damages.
2. Misjudging Distance Between Vehicles
Misjudging the distance between a rider’s bike and other vehicles is a common cause of motorcycle accidents.
Due to their smaller size, motorcycles are often difficult for drivers to spot on the road. Additionally, they can travel faster than most cars, particularly when passing slower traffic or around corners. Therefore, riders need to be cautious when sharing the road with larger vehicles, as there’s no guarantee that drivers have seen them accurately, even if they think they have.
3. Driving Under The Influence Of Substances
Another common cause of accidents is driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, which can impair your judgment and reaction time. Those found guilty may face criminal penalties and civil lawsuits. On the one hand, injured parties may file compensation claims.
4. Inattentive Driving
Inattentive driving is one of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents. Drivers distracted by mobile phones, GPS, or other devices can easily miss seeing a motorcycle in their blind spot and hit it from behind.
Inattentive drivers also include those who aren’t paying attention to what’s happening on the road in front of them. Here are some examples:
- If a driver is distracted by something happening inside their car (e.g., arguing with a passenger) and doesn’t notice another vehicle until it’s too late
- If f driver fails to see something directly ahead because they aren’t looking at where they’re going
- If a driver isn’t paying attention when approaching an intersection or curve in the road
Staying attentive while driving can help you avoid crashes and make your trip safer.
5. Car Failing To Yield
A car fails to yield when it cuts off a motorcycle’s lane while turning, causing a collision. This type of accident is common and can result in severe injuries for both parties involved.
Distracted driving is a leading cause of this type of accident. To prevent it, drivers should check their mirrors and focus on the road, while motorcyclists can increase their visibility by wearing bright clothing and using their headlights.
6. Riders Overtaking Bicyclists, Pedestrians, Or Other Vehicles
To safely overtake the road, riders must check blind spots, signal intent, and give ample space. According to the NHTSA, there were 2,858 motorcycle-related fatalities in 2020, with many due to collisions while passing other vehicles.
When overtaking bicyclists or pedestrians, riders must be vigilant of their surroundings. By slowing down and giving them extra space, riders can minimize risks and ensure that everyone arrives at their destination safely.
7. Inclement Weather And Visibility Issues
Inclement weather can impact road conditions and reduce visibility.
Water on the road surface can make it slippery, especially in puddles or drains. Drivers should stay alert to avoid skidding into other hazards.
Moreover, snow-covered roads may remain icy even when temperatures are above freezing due to melting and refreezing. If riding during winter, ensure tires have traction devices or use duct tape.
8. Poor Road Conditions
Motorcyclists are at risk when faced with poor road conditions, which can be caused by factors like weather and construction. These can result in loss of control and skidding on the pavement, potentially leading to a fall or collision with another vehicle. Motorcyclists must remain vigilant and adjust their riding accordingly when encountering poor road conditions.
In addition to the factors mentioned, poor road conditions can also be caused by a lack of maintenance, potholes, or debris on the road. These hazards may be more challenging to spot and can cause severe accidents if not avoided.
Proper road maintenance and regular checks by authorities can help prevent such incidents.
A motorcycle accident can be life-threatening. Therefore, prioritizing safety by riding attentively, wearing protective gear, and avoiding poor road conditions can help prevent such incidents. If you or someone you know went through a motorcycle accident, contact a trusted motorcycle accident lawyer to discuss your rights and legal options.