Although motorcycles offer their operators maneuverability, agility and other freedoms, they lack the crashworthiness of other motor vehicles. Consequently, collisions involving motorcycles and cars and trucks may be devastating for motorcyclists in Alabama and elsewhere. In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, riders are injured or killed in over 80% of all reported motorcycle-involved wrecks.
Operating a motorcycle safely requires different knowledge and skills than are required to drive a car. However, it is estimated that one-third of riders who are killed as a result of motorcycle accidents are appropriately licensed. Completing a training course and obtaining the necessary licensure may help ensure motorcyclists understand the inherent limitations of their vehicles and how to safely operate them.
Alcohol is a factor in about 43 percent of all motorcycle crashes resulting in death. Potentially impairing a rider’s coordination, among other effects, consuming any amount of alcohol may affect people’s ability to ride safely. This includes making the necessary defensive maneuvers to avoid collisions with other vehicles.
Other motorists turning into the path of motorcycles are responsible for approximately one-third of accidents involving motorcycles and other vehicles. At least in part, this may be because motorcycles are more difficult to see than cars and trucks. According to FindLaw, other automobiles, as well as road and weather conditions, may easily hide these smaller visual targets, and thus, increase the risk of motorcycle accidents.
For drivers of cars and trucks, road hazards are usually a minor inconvenience. Potholes and other objects on the roadway, railroad tracks, ruts, uneven pavement and other such hazards may present a significant danger for motorcycles; which have only two wheels and may be less stable than other automobiles.