It’s no secret that riding a motorbike can be dangerous. In fact, although motorcyclists only make up 1% of road traffic in the UK, they account for nearly 1/5th of road deaths!
In this post, we explore some of the cold, hard facts around motorcycle safety – examining statistics from across the UK, US and EU, before looking at what you can do to minimise your risk of death or serious injury on the roads.
The hard facts
Whichever way you look at them, the statistics on how many people per day die of distracted driving accidents are pretty alarming:
Fatalities and serious injuries (UK Government Think! Figures)
- Motorcyclists are between 38 and 40 times more likely to be killed in a road traffic accident than car drivers (per mile travelled)
- In 2013, 331 motorcyclists died on the UK roads
- In 2013, 4,866 motorcyclists were seriously injured
- 30 motorcyclists are killed or injured every day at junctions
- 8% of all road accidents in the UK involve motorcyclists
- 70% of all motorcycle accidents involve another vehicle (EU Study)
- 48% of all accidents caused by other road users
- 80% of motorcycle fatalities are caused by major head injuries
- Approximately 55% of motorcycle accidents occur at junctions (EU Study)
Most common injuries (US Study)
- Fractures – 27%
- Contusions – 16.3%
- Sprains – 13.7%
- Deep and Open Wounds – 12.1%
- Minor and superficial injuries – 10.7%
Whilst these stats make for uncomfortable reading, there is some good news.
Related: What is the process of getting compensation for a trucking accident in Michigan?
Overall, the number of serious motorcycle accidents has fallen over the past few years, as has the number of serious injuries and fatalities. If you happen to be in an accident, you would need a legal advice. Learn more about the Dominguez Firm’s Los Angeles motorcycle accident lawyer who will protect your rights.
The dangers of riding alone
There are also some scary statistics surrounding riding motorbikes in rural areas:
- 60-70% of motorcyclist fatalities occur on rural roads
- Motorway accidents only account for 1% of fatalities
- 41% of fatalities occur when a motorcycle runs off the road
Studies suggest that a large proportion of these fatal accidents happen when a motorcyclist is riding alone at quieter times, like on weekends and at night. (See Preusser et al 1995).
The Golden Hour
There’s a reason that riding alone is more dangerous. If you suffer a serious injury after a motorcycle accident, every second counts. It’s what’s known as ‘The Golden Hour’ – that window crucial first 60 minutes after an accident.
Put simply, the quicker you receive specialist medical attention, the better your chances of making a full recovery. If you don’t receive the proper treatment quickly, your chances of survival drop significantly.
If you drive off the road and have an accident when riding alone, in a rural areas, or at night, there’s no telling how long it might be before someone notices you. By the time they do, it could be too late.
How you can protect yourself
If you’re a biker, then chances are you’re already taking steps to reduce the risk of accidents, injury and death when riding, but there’s always more you could be doing.
The right gear
It should go without saying, but wearing the right safety equipment is one of the best ways to protect yourself on the road. Always dress to fall, and make sure you’re wearing:
- The right helmet – (check out the SHARP website for additional advice)
- A protective jacket
- Protective gloves
- Motorcycle boots
- Protective trousers
The right helmet alone will reduce your risk of suffering a fatal head injury by 50%!
It’s also important to think about visibility. Wearing brightly coloured gear during the day, and reflective gear at night will help to ensure other road users can see you.
Around 50% of motorcycle accidents are directly caused by other road users. Riding safely and defensively, whilst anticipating the actions of other road users will help to make you less vulnerable on the road.
How Ridersmate can help
It doesn’t matter how careful you are as a biker – motorcycling is always going to come with its risks. With Ridersmate, being left alone, injured and stranded won’t be one of them.
The moment you fall off your motorbike and suffer a serious injury, Ridersmate springs into action. Sending an emergency text message to your loved ones, it will let them know where you are and how fast you were going when you crashed, so they can send for help.
Fitting easily onto any motorbike, it’s lightweight, durable, and easy to use. Head over to the Ridersmate Store, and get the security and peace of mind that comes from knowing you’re protected today.
Source: Custom Motorcycle Rims