Despite the fact that motorcycles account for only 3% of all registered vehicles on the road, motorcycle riders account for 14% of all traffic-related deaths in the United States, and most crashes involve a collision with another vehicle.

The latest information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) highlights the dangers associated with riding a motorcycle.

National motorcycle accident statistics

The goal of the research by insurer Carsurance.net is not to dissuade people from riding motorcycles but informing them of the potential dangers they face. Here are some key takeaways from the research:

  • In 2018, 4,985 motorcycle riders were killed in the U.S.
  • Motorcyclists are 29 times more likely to receive fatal injuries than occupants of automobiles
  • Drunk driving by motorcyclists or car drivers account for 33% of all life-threatening crashes
  • 45% of motorcycle accidents result in serious injuries
  • Wearing a helmet reduces the risk of a head injury by 69% and the risk of death by nearly 50%

Virginia motorcycle crash data slightly below national averages

The Virginia Highway Safety Office released its 2018 statistics for crashes involving motorcycles showing:

  • 1,792 motorcycle crashes accounting for 1.4% of all accidents
  • 88 motorcycle riders died representing 10.7% of all crash fatalities
  • 1,495 riders received at least minor injuries
  • 629 riders were seriously injured accounting for 8.5% of all severe traffic injuries

Accidents involving passenger cars are the most common

Nearly three out of every four motorcycle accidents involve other vehicles, such as passenger cars and an overwhelming 67% of those crashes result from the other driver making an improper left turn in front of a motorcyclist, and the vast majority of those accidents happen at intersections.

Safety experts say most crashes happen because other drivers fail to spot motorcycles in time due to their smaller size, often because the driver isn’t paying attention. If another driver’s carelessness injures you, an experienced personal injury attorney will protect your rights and fight for the compensation you deserve.