If you are a motorcycle rider, you might wonder how motorcycle crashes are most likely to happen. Because motorcycles are smaller compared to other vehicles, they are at special risk of getting into accidents on the road. How and when motorcycle crashes occur may differ, however. Some types of crashes are more likely to happen than others, and during particular times of the week.
Recent research has helped shed some light on how motorcycle crashes happen and the types of riders most affected by collisions. In 2017, the University of California, Berkeley published a study that analyzed motorcycle collisions. This study utilized motorcycle crash reports gathered by police officers from 2011 to 2015. The study went through this information and made some discoveries regarding motorcycle collisions.
First, the vast majority of injured motorcycle riders were more likely to be male. While female riders could also sustain injury, they made up only 11% of all injuries. The study found that male riders generally ranged from young to middle age. The largest group was the 15-34 age group, which made up 45% of all motorcyclists. The 35-64 age group was the second largest.
According to the study, motorcycle collisions were more likely to occur during certain times of the day and specific days of the week. Thursdays through Sundays would see noticeably higher instances of collision during afternoon hours. Collisions would increase on weekends in the early afternoon hours, from noon to 3 pm. Motorcycle accidents generally did not go up in the evenings except between 6 and 9 pm on Fridays.
The study also analyzed various causes of motorcycle crashes. Driving at high speeds was the predominant factor in collisions at 29.5% of crashes, followed by automobile right of way violations at 18.7%. Vehicles making improper turns factored in third place with 17.4% of crashes. Drugs or alcohol use on the part of motorists ranked fourth and unsafe changing of lanes factored into fifth place.
Finally, the study discovered the kinds of crashes most likely to take place. A vehicle broadsiding a motorcycle made up 27% of collisions, followed by motorcycles overturning at 18.8%. Motorcycles striking an object, experiencing a rear end collision and sustaining a sideswipe collision marked the third, fourth and fifth places respectively. These kinds of crashes illustrate the necessity of wearing a helmet and safe driving practices to increase the odds of coming out of a crash alive.