About half of all traffic deaths occur with vulnerable road users, including motorcyclists. Meanwhile, about 1.35 million people die in road crashes each year. About 20 to 50 million people sustain non-fatal injuries.
Are you a new motorcycle owner? It’s important to prepare yourself on the road. Learning the top common causes of motorcycle accidents can help you learn how to stay safe.
Otherwise, you might need a motorcycle accident lawyer to help you file a lawsuit.
Protect yourself before you’re in an accident. Here are the 10 most common causes of motorcycle wrecks. With this guide, you can prepare yourself on the road.
Stay safe out there with these tips today!
1. Inexperienced Drivers
How much experience do you have driving a motorcycle? Unfortunately, inexperience can cause many accidents. If you’re an inexperienced driver, you might make unsafe decisions while on the road.
These decisions could impact your safety and the safety of others.
If you’re a new driver, consider taking a class. You’ll learn how to operate your motorcycle safely and with confidence.
An instructor can help you learn more about motorcycle safety and laws. After the course, you’ll know how to stay safe on the road.
Before buying a motorcycle, research which bikes are best for beginner drivers. You might feel tempted to buy the best motorcycle available. However, you’re still learning to ride.
Buying a used motorcycle can help you feel better about potential scratches and dents on your bike as you learn. Make sure to perform a pre-check of your bike before you hit the road.
You don’t want to find out there’s an issue with the lights, clutch, or tank while you’re driving.
Make sure to purchase high-quality safety gear, too. Prioritize your safety while you’re on the road. A high-grade helmet, jacket, and gloves can protect you from sustaining personal injuries from a motorcycle wreck.
That helmet could save your life.
Learning how to ride your bike safely will also teach you how to remain alert while you’re on the road. While you learn, try to avoid highways, interstates, and freeways. High traffic areas can put you at a higher risk.
2. Left Turns
One of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents is left-hand turns. A car could make a left-hand turn and strike your bike. Usually, this occurs when the motorcyclist is:
- Trying to overtake a car
- Passing a car
- Going straight through an intersection
These accidents occur because a motorcycle’s smaller size makes it less visible to a car that’s turning. If someone hits you while they’re making a left turn, it’s likely they’re at fault.
Contact a motorcycle accident attorney right away to make your case.
You can avoid a left-turn motorcycle crash by learning how to anticipate the driver’s next move. Learn how to recognize a car is about to make a left turn. For example, they’ll likely look both ways beforehand.
Try to make eye contact with the driver, too. If they notice you’re there, they might not make the turn.
3. Motorcycle Defects
Remember, it’s important to have your motorcycle checked before you hit the road. Otherwise, a poorly designed motorcycle part could cause an accident. You could hold the manufacturer liable for your injuries.
Contact a motorcycle accident lawyer if you think a motorcycle defect caused you to crash.
4. Sudden Stops
If a car in front of you stops suddenly, you might not react in time. You could rear-end the vehicle.
Head-on collisions are common causes of motorcycle accidents, too. These accidents are often fatal.
If you come to a sudden stop or crash into a vehicle, you could get crushed. You might even catapult into the air and hit a hard surface. These accidents are often fatal for motorcyclists.
You can learn how to avoid head-on motorcycle accidents with the “Four Rs” method:
- Read the road
- Drive to the right
- Reduce your speed
- Ride off the road
Learning how to read the road can help you take defensive action.
5. Dangerous Road Conditions
Always remain aware of your surroundings. Otherwise, dangerous road conditions could cause motorcycle accidents.
These can include:
- A lack of necessary signs and signals
- Crumbling pavement
- Uneven heights between lanes
- Dead animals
- Slick pavement conditions
You could lose control of your vehicle. The smaller size of your vehicle could put you at a higher risk of an accident.
6. Lane Splitting
Lane splitting occurs when a driver moves between two lanes of slow-moving or stopped vehicles. These incidents are common with traffic congestion and lights. These accidents often occur due to:
- The reduced space available
- The proximity between the motorcycle and car
- A car’s inability to anticipate someone will pass them when traffic is stopped
Since cars don’t use this maneuver, they’re less likely to expect someone else will.
In some states, lane splitting is illegal. If you try lane splitting, you could find yourself at-fault for the accident.
7. Driving Under the Influence
About 5,000 motorcyclists die in motorcycle wrecks each year. Over 30% of these fatalities are due to alcohol-related accidents, which makes DUI one of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents and fatalities.
Above all else, don’t drink and drive. If you’re going to a bar, have a plan. Either limit your drinking or find another way home.
You can always use Lyft, Uber, or another ride-share app.
Many people decide to buy a motorcycle to drive faster than they would with a car. Unfortunately, speeding can increase your chance of getting into a crash.
Make sure to follow the speed limit. If you have a need for speed, look for a special speed park instead of the road.
9. Unsafe Lane Changes
Make sure to always check your blind spot. Unfortunately, you can’t control what other drivers do. If they fail to check their blind spot, they might not see you when they change lanes.
Recognize the signs that a car is changing lanes, including:
- The driver checking their mirrors
- Wheels turning
- Turn signals
- The driver swivels their head
Remain proactive to become a defensive driver.
10. Car Doors
A driver could open their door while they’re parked. Remain vigilant. If you’re driving in an area where cars are parked at the side of the road, keep your distance.
Stay Safe: 10 Causes of Motorcycle Accidents to Avoid
Stay safe while you’re on the road! Understanding these 10 causes of motorcycle accidents can help you become a defensive driver.
If you are in a motorcycle accident, though, you could have a case. Consider contacting a motorcycle accident law firm right away. They can help you fight for the compensation you deserve.
Think you have a case? Were you injured in a motorcycle accident? We’re here to help.