Motorcycle Accident Statistics

Motorcycle accident statistics are in a class by themselves. This is partly due to the agencies concerned with such information — the U. S. Department of Transportation (DOT); the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA); the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) — categorize motorcycle accidents separately from other vehicular accidents.

We, here at the motorcycle injury firm of Scott J. Corwin, A Professional Law Corporation, have compiled various accident statistics from the CDC and NHTSA.

Motorcycle Accident Statistics

In 2008, motor vehicle crash-related deaths involving cars and light trucks reached an all-time low in the United States. At the same time, however, motorcyclist deaths reached an all-time high, more than doubling between 1999 and 2008.

A recent study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) showed the following:

  • Between 2001 and 2008, more than 34,000 motorcyclists were killed and an estimated 1,222,000 persons were treated in a U.S. emergency department (ED) for a non-fatal motorcycle-related injury.
  • The highest death and injury rates were among 20-24 year-olds, followed by 25-29 year-olds.
  • More than half of all nonfatal motorcycle injuries treated in emergency rooms were to the leg/foot (30%) or head/neck (22%).
  • Motorcyclist death rates increased 55% from 2001 to 2008 (1.12 per 100,000 persons in 2001 to 1.74 per 100,000 persons in 2008).
  • The number of nonfatal motorcyclist injuries that were treated in EDs also increased, from nearly 120,000 injuries in 2001 to about 175,000 in 2008.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) provides the following motorcycle accident statistics for 2013 :

  • There are an estimated 9 million motorcycles on the US roadways each year, compared to approximately 183 million passenger cars.
  • In 2013, 4,668 motorcyclists were killed and another 88,000 were injured in motorcycle accidents. This is a 6.4 and 5.4 percent increase from 2012, respectively.
  • Approximately 148,000 motorcyclists have died since the 1966 passage of the Highway Safety and National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act.
  • Motorcyclists are more than 30 times more likely to be killed and 9 times more likely to be injured in an accident compared to a vehicle driver.
  • 51 percent of motorcycle accident fatalities are to people over the age of 40 in 2008.
  • The rate of motorcycle accident fatalities for riders under age 30 has fallen consistently in the last 10 years.
  • In nearly 28 percent of all fatal motorcycle accidents, the motorcycle rider had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or higher.
  • In 35 percent of all fatal motorcycle accidents, the motorcycle rider was speeding.
  • 25 percent of motorcycle riders involved in fatal accidents were riding without the proper license.
  • 47 percent of all motorcycles involved in fatal accidents collided with another type of motor vehicle on the road. In these accidents, 77 percent of the motorcycles were struck in the front, while only 7 percent were rear-ended. 41 percent of these accidents involve the other vehicle turning left when the motorcycle was going straight or passing the vehicle.
  • Fatal motorcycle accidents are more likely to involve collision with a fixed object than another vehicle.
  • The NHTSA estimates that helmets saved 1,829 motorcyclists' lives in 2008. If all motorcyclists had worn helmets, another 823 lives could have been saved.

Free Consultation With Our Los Angeles Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

If you or a loved one has sustained a serious injury because of a motorcycle accident, contact Scott J. Corwin, A Professional Law Corporation, at 866-477-1011 to schedule a free initial consultation. We handle cases in Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Riverside, Orange, San Diego, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties and throughout the state of California.