Being involved in a motor vehicle accident in Oklahoma City is a frightening experience, especially if there is a motorcycle involved. Because motorcycles offer so much less protection than cars and trucks, motorcyclists often end up with far more severe injuries than occupants of other vehicles.
According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), 5,014 motorcyclists in the U.S. died in crashes in 2019, and there were 84,000 injuries. Data from the same year indicates that a motorcyclist is 29 times more likely to die in a crash than an occupant in a passenger car (per vehicle miles traveled).
Key Facts Oklahoma City Drivers Should Know About Motorcycles
Improving awareness for drivers and motorcyclists can help reduce the number of accidents in Oklahoma City and the surrounding area. There are several things that commonly contribute to motorcycle accidents:
- Poor perception: Motorcycles are so much smaller than other vehicles that drivers often don’t see them or misjudge their distance and speed.
- Inadequate reaction time: Motorcycles can accelerate and stop much faster than other vehicles, which can lead to collisions.
- Visibility issues: Motorcycles are harder to see when in a driver’s blind spot or surrounded by other objects such as guardrails and traffic. Drivers may also have trouble seeing a motorcycle’s turn signals and brake lights, especially during bad weather.
Additionally, sometimes motorcyclists slow down by downshifting rather than using the brakes, which doesn’t cause the brake lights to illuminate. A driver may not be able to perceive the motorcycle’s slower speed quickly enough to avoid a collision, especially if the driver is speeding or distracted.
Motorcycles are extremely agile, which makes it easy for riders to change lanes quickly. They may not use their turn signals adequately, and drivers may fail to anticipate how quickly a motorcycle can enter or leave their lane.
A motorcycle is easily affected by wind and water on the road. Oklahoma City often experiences these types of weather events, which can make the roads dangerous for motorcyclists.