Motorcycle crashes are similar to any other motor vehicle crashes in many ways. They involve a complex combination of contributing factors.
However, they stand out from other types of crashes in an equal number of ways.
How do differences in vehicles contribute?
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration takes a look at the anatomy of a motorcycle crash. One of the things they focus on is the differences in vehicles.
Automobiles have a certain level of crashworthiness, along with characteristics that provide protection to the occupants of the vehicle. Motorcycles lack all of this. Cars have more bulk and weight. They have door beams, airbags, seat belts and a roof. They also have four wheels, and their larger size means they are easier to see.
Motorcycles lack these things. However, they do have agility, the ability to stop quickly, high levels of maneuverability and the ability to swerve fast when needed.
What are other major contributing factors?
A good portion of motorcycle crashes are single-vehicle crashes: in other words, crashes where the motorcycle was the only vehicle involved. In such accidents, it is typically a lack of experience or appreciation for the dangers of operating a motorcycle that lead to the crashes.
Other crashes happen due to visibility. Motorcycles are small and hard to spot. When drivers do not exercise enough caution on the road, they may easily end up merging into a lane with a motorcycle or making a turn into a passing motorcyclist.
Fortunately, by understanding what causes a motorcycle crash, it is possible to potentially reduce the risk of them happening. Exhibiting safe road behaviors can also go a long way to that end.