What the Numbers Show
The Hurt Study was published in 1981 and analyzed nearly 3,600 motorcycle accidents and compiled statistics on age, occupation, protective gear, and locations of accidents, among many factors, in order to better understand how and why motorcycle accidents occur. Even though this study is old, the information still rings true.
If we can understand the reasons behind why a motorcycle crash happens then steps can be taken to better educate riders on how to avoid potentially fatal situations. Here is what was reported in the study:
- Approximately three fourths of all motorcycle accidents involved a passenger vehicle.
- In nearly one third of accidents that involved a passenger vehicle, the driver of the passenger vehicle was at fault by violating the motorcyclists’ right of way.
- Intersections are the most likely place for a motorcycle accident as they provide the most opportunity for a passenger vehicle to violate a motorcyclist's right of way.
- Typically, a motorcyclist has only two seconds to complete a maneuver to avoid a collision.
- Both weather and roadway defects amounted as a cause for only two percent of all accidents studied.
What a large amount of the data discovered in the Hurt Study showed, was that the greatest danger to a motorcyclist was unprotected left turns. It is at this place in the roadway that gives passenger vehicles the opportunity to turn left in front of motorcyclists. Often the passenger vehicles drivers’ excuse for causing the accident was simply that they did not see the motorcyclist coming.
Multiple things can be done to help stem the tide of this type of motorcycle accident, the first being the education of riders about the unique dangers of intersections and where motorcyclists are most exposed to risk. The second thing that can be done, is to educate the drivers of passenger vehicles on how to spot motorcyclists. “Always look twice for a bike” is a superb mantra to repeat in your head while driving.
If you or someone you know has been hurt in a Southern California motorcycle crash, you may be eligible for compensation for your injuries and should contact one of our experienced Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorneys at Steinberg Injury Lawyers at (800) 989-6385.