Many of the same factors that cause car crashes are the same in instances involving motorcycles. However, the consequences are typically far worse, and often result in catastrophic personal injury (a life altering injury) or death. Bikers are involved in fatal crashes at a rate of 35 per 100 million miles of traveling. The rate for passenger vehicles is 1.7 per 100 million miles.
Most of the accidents involving a motorcycle are the result of another vehicle not seeing the biker. Many times, the driver of the other vehicle will turn in front of a biker suddenly, stop unexpectedly or cut a biker off. Many of these fatal crashes could be avoided. Human error is the causative factor in most motorcycle accidents. Even though motorcycles really only make up about 2 percent of the traffic on the roads, they account for more than 10 percent of all the crashes each year.
Depending on the facts of the motorcycle accident, one or both drivers may be cited criminally, sued civilly, or both. In the event of a death, a state may prosecute the criminally negligent driver. Those charges may involve driving without due care and attention, assault with a deadly weapon, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or murder. Roughly 80 percent of motorcycle crashes kill, maim, or badly injure the rider. On the other hand, slightly less than 20 percent of passengers/drivers in a car will be badly injured or killed. Motorcycle accidents are on the rise.