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Motorcycle accident data: some scary figures to consider

Motorcycle accident data from the Insurance Information Institute shows why people who are hurt while riding a motorcycle need to consider their legal options after the crash. Before we get to that point, let's look at some of the basic data. The III looked at a report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration about fatal motorcycle accidents. The report found that 4,668 people died in such accidents in 2013. That represented a 6.4 percent decline from 2012.

Injuries in motorcycle accidents were down too. Roughly 88,000 people were hurt in these wrecks in 2013, representing a 5.4 percent decline from 2012.

Unfortunately, these two stats mask the more discouraging statistics. According to the III, if you look at per vehicle mile traveled, motorcycle riders are five times as likely as car passengers to get hurt in a wreck. Using the same metric, motorcycle riders are 26 times more likely to die in a crash than a car passenger. And with 8.4 million motorcycles out on the road in 2013, that's a lot of people at risk of serious, catastrophic or even fatal injuries.

What this makes clear is the risk people who ride motorcycles face everyday when they ride their vehicles. And that doesn't mean they are the problem -- far from it, actually. People on other vehicles need to be acutely aware of a motorcycle's presence out on the road, otherwise they risk hitting them. And if it is determined that the other vehicle was negligent or reckless, the motorcyclist (or his or her loved ones) could have a case against that irresponsible driver.

Source: iii.org, "Motorcycle Crashes," Accessed Dec. 3, 2015

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