Motorcycle accidents are one of the leading causes of death and injury on our roads. According to NHTSA, motorcycles are more likely to be involved in a fatal crash than any other vehicle. The rate of motorcycle fatalities has been increasing since 1997. There are many reasons why motorcycle accidents happen, but some causes are more common than others. Here are the most common causes of motorcycle accidents and how to avoid them:
1. Left-Hand Turns
One of the most common motorcycle accidents is when a car turns left in front of a motorcycle while the motorcycle is going straight. Left-hand turns cause a good percent of all motorcyclists accidents. This is often because the driver of the car didn’t see the motorcycle, or they misjudged its speed.
To avoid this type of accident, always be aware of your surroundings and make yourself as visible as possible to other drivers. Use your headlights, wear bright clothing, and don’t ride in a car’s blind spot. It would help if you also were especially cautious at intersections where left-hand turns are common.
Speeding is a major cause of motorcycle accidents because it increases the risk of losing control of the bike and makes it harder to stop or swerve around obstacles on the road. It’s also more difficult for other drivers to judge a motorcycle’s speed, so they may not realize how fast you’re going until it’s too late.
To avoid speeding, always obey the posted speed limits and never ride faster than you’re comfortable with. Remember that road conditions, weather, and traffic can affect your ability to control your motorcycle, so slow down if necessary.
3. Drunk Driving
Drunk driving is a major road problem and hazardous for motorcyclists. Since motorcycles offer little protection in crashes, drunk drivers are more likely to cause serious injuries or even fatalities when they hit a motorcycle.
To avoid being hit by a drunk driver, always use caution when riding near bars or restaurants where people may have been drinking. Be extra alert at night when drunk drivers are more likely to be on the road. If you see a drunk driver on the road, do your best to get out of the way and call 911.
4. Road Hazards
Road hazards are another leading cause of motorcycle accidents. These road hazards can include potholes, debris, wet leaves, and even animals crossing the road. A road hazard can cause you to lose control of your motorcycle and crash.
To avoid crashing because of a road hazard, always be on the lookout for obstacles on the road. Ride at a safe speed so that you can swerve around them if necessary. It’s also a good idea to avoid riding in the rain or on wet roads, as these can make it harder to see hazards and make it more likely that you’ll lose control of your bike.
5. Lane Splitting
Lane splitting is when a motorcycle rider drives between two lanes of stopped or slow-moving traffic. This can be dangerous because it’s easy for drivers not to see the motorcycle and accidentally hit them. It can also be dangerous for the motorcycle rider, as they could get sandwiched between two vehicles or hit by an opening door.
To avoid being involved in a lane-splitting accident, always use caution when riding between lanes of traffic. Make sure you’re visible to other drivers and that they know you’re there. And be extra careful around trucks and buses, as they have large blind spots where you could easily disappear from view.
6. Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is a leading cause of accidents for all vehicles, and motorcycles are no exception. Distracted driving can include anything from talking on the phone to eating and drinking, taking a driver’s attention away from the road. This increases the risk of not seeing a motorcycle and causing an accident.
To avoid being involved in a distracted driving accident, always be aware of your surroundings and try to make yourself as visible as possible. If you see a driver who looks like they’re not paying attention, slow down or move out of the way. And if you’re ever tempted to drive while distracted, remember that it’s not worth risking your life or the lives of others.
Various factors can cause motorcycle accidents, but some are more common than others. To avoid being involved in an accident, riders should always use caution and be aware of their surroundings. They should also obey the speed limit and never ride under the influence of alcohol or drugs. And finally, they should watch out for potential hazards on the road and take extra care when riding in poor road conditions.