Motorcyclists are one of the most at-risk road users.
In the UK, motorcyclists account for 20% of all road deaths, even though they only make up 1% of road traffic. Additionally, motorcycles travel less distance on UK roads than other vehicles yet have over 50% more fatal accidents than pedal cyclists.
Road accidents are incredibly dangerous for everyone involved, but for motorcyclists in particular, they can be more severe and often tragic.
This is largely because, unlike other vehicles on the road, a motorbike doesn’t offer any sort of protective structure. This means that if a motorcyclist is in an accident, they are much more likely to be seriously injured or killed.
Below, we’ve listed 10 of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents.
Unsafe lane changes
One of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents is when another vehicle changes lanes without proper caution and crashes into the motorcyclist. This is often because the other driver simply doesn’t see the motorcyclist or changes lanes without looking correctly. To avoid this, drivers should always be aware of their surroundings and use their mirrors to check for any nearby motorcycles.
Another hazard for motorcyclists is car doors. This can happen when a driver opens their door without checking first and a motorcyclist collides with it. This can be incredibly dangerous, as it can often result in the motorcyclist being thrown off of their bike. To avoid this, always be aware of any cars parked on the side of the road and give them a wide berth.
Speeding is one of the most common causes of accidents, regardless of the vehicle. But for motorcyclists, speeding can be even more dangerous. This is because it gives the motorcyclist less time to react to any hazards on the road and can make it more difficult to control the bike. If you are speeding and hit something, the impact is also likely to be much more severe. The higher the speed, the greater the impact and the consequences are more severe. To avoid this, always obey the speed limit and never ride faster than you are comfortable with, especially in adverse weather conditions.
Driving under the influence
Drunk driving or driving under the influence of drugs is another major cause of accidents on the roads. This is because alcohol impairs your judgment and reaction time. It is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol level above 0.08%. If you are caught driving under the influence, you could face severe penalties, including jail time. To avoid this, always plan ahead and designate a sober driver if you are going to be drinking – never chance it. Driving under the influence could not only be fatal to you but to other road users and pedestrians also.
Lane splitting is when a driver drives between two lanes of traffic. This is incredibly dangerous. It increases the chance of an accident occurring for all road users since it can lead to high-speed lane changes, unexpected braking, and collisions.
Rear-end accidents are prominent due to sudden stops and harsh braking. When a car ahead of you slams on its brakes, it can take you by surprise and you may not have time to react. This could result in you hitting the back of a car or swerving into oncoming traffic. Always leave a safe following distance between you and the car in front of you so that you have time to brake if they do.
Inexperienced drivers are much more likely to be involved in an accident than experienced drivers. This is because they may not have the skills and knowledge to deal with all the hazards on the road. They may also be more prone to making mistakes, such as speeding or driving under the influence. If you are a new driver, make sure you take the time to learn the rules of the road and respect all road users, especially the more vulnerable ones.
Right-turn accidents are one of the most common types of accidents, especially at intersections. This is because many drivers fail to give way to oncoming traffic when making a right turn. This can often result in a collision with an oncoming car or motorcycle. Always look both ways before making a turn and give way to any oncoming traffic.
Dangerous road conditions
Bad weather and poor road conditions are major hazards for motorcyclists. If the roads are wet, icy, or covered in leaves, it can make it more difficult to control the bike. It can also increase the chance of skidding or sliding. Always ride at a safe speed and be extra cautious in bad weather or poor road conditions.
One way to avoid dangerous road accidents is to take enhanced care on the roads, including using a motorcycle dash camera. Motorcycle dash cameras are incredibly helpful for recording your rides and providing you with recordings of your journeys to be used in the event of an accident or claim. You can read our full blog on Why a Motorcycle Camera is a Great Investment for more information on the safety benefits.
Alternatively, you can browse our range of motorcycle dash cameras here.