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Motorcycling in the United States: Fatality questions

With spring weather on the horizon, more motorcyclists are going to be heading out on the roads. Maybe you'll be one of them. It's important to know that you have a right to be on the roads; you shouldn't have to fight against traffic or get injured because of a dangerous driver. If you are, you deserve to be compensated fairly for your injuries.

What are motorcycles?

Motorcycles, by definition, include mopeds, three-wheeled motorcycles, off-roading motorcycles, mini bikes, pocket bikes and scooters. When you look at the data surrounding motorcycles, most data will revolve around those that can be used on roadways.

How many people are killed in motorcycle accidents?

The data from 2013 states that 4,668 motorcyclists were killed in motor vehicle accidents, and another 88,000 were injured. In most cases, it was two-wheeled motorcycles that were involved in the accidents that ended up being fatal in nature.

Motorcyclists accounted for 14 percent of traffic fatalities in 2013. Interestingly, the driver was most commonly the person who was killed with 4,399 of the motorcyclists killed driving at the time of the crash. Passengers made up the difference in fatalities.

Motorcyclists face a fatality rate six times the rate of that for passenger car occupants.

Does helmet use make a difference?

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, it does make a difference to wear a helmet. It's been estimated that helmets saved the lives of around 1,630 motorcyclists in 2013 alone. It's estimated that another 715 people may have survived their accidents if they had used helmets.

Source: U.S. Department of Transportation, "Motorcycles," accessed March 07, 2016

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