Motorcyclists face many road dangers in Austin, Texas. Weather, visibility, and surface conditions affect motorcyclists more than other road users because they are exposed to the elements.
But some of the greatest dangers to motorcyclists come from vehicle drivers. It is probably safe to say that most (but not all) collisions between motorcycles and automobiles result from an error by the auto driver. As a result, motorcyclists must watch for other drivers as carefully as they watch for potholes.
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Of Austin’s 276 crashes, 185 involved a collision with another vehicle. The remaining 91 crashes were single-vehicle accidents where a motorcycle collided with a fixed object, ran off the road, or hit an animal.
CRIS identified human factors as responsible for 215, or 77.9%, of Austin’s motorcycle crashes in 2021. The remaining 61 crashes, or 22.1% of the total, resulted from:
Austin’s motorcycle accidents caused 14 fatalities. Shockingly, 92.4% of the motorcyclists involved in Austin motorcycle accidents were either injured or killed.
Austin’s motorcycle crash statistics identify factors that caused multiple accidents. By far, motorcyclists’ most common road dangers result from careless, distracted, or intoxicated driving.
Some of the most common road dangers for motorcyclists in Austin include:
Almost 40% of Austin’s motorcycle crashes happened during sunset, night, or sunrise. Motorcycles are smaller and faster than automobiles. This makes them more difficult to see in poor lighting conditions.
When a driver fails to spot a motorcycle due to poor light, the liability for the crash will depend on whether the motorcycle was properly equipped with headlights. If the motorcyclist was riding with the headlight on, the auto driver probably could not use the light conditions as an excuse for hitting the motorcyclist.
Speeding was the top human-related road danger. Austin had 22 motorcycle crashes where either the automobile or motorcycle was speeding, according to CRIS.
Driving too fast for conditions means that the motorcyclist or driver was traveling at an unsafe speed based on the road design, surface conditions, or weather. Thus, it could be considered speeding even if the speed limit is not exceeded if the road is wet.
Driving over the limit means that the motorcyclist or driver exceeded the speed limit. Speed limits get set based on many factors, including road design and location.
Both types of speeding can endanger motorcyclists. Speeding increases the risk that a motorcyclist can lose control of the motorcycle. And speeding by vehicle drivers reduces their opportunities to swerve or brake in time to avoid hitting a motorcyclist. The liability for these crashes falls on the speeder.
Another driver-related road danger for motorcyclists comes from distracted drivers. Distracted drivers caused 18 motorcycle crashes in Austin, according to CRIS.
Distractions include any activity that takes a driver’s hands, eyes, or mind away from driving. Interestingly, only two motorcycle crashes were caused by drivers distracted by their cell phones. The remaining 16 crashes do not specify the nature of the distraction. But some common distractions include:
Distractions prevent drivers from spotting motorcyclists until it is too late to avoid a collision. The liability for distracted driving crashes always falls on the distracted driver.
In 2021, Austin had 12 motorcycle accidents that happened on wet or slick roads. Poor road conditions affect motorcycles more than automobiles because motorcycles only have two tires. If the tires slip sideways, the motorcyclist can lose their balance and go into a slide.
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Motorcycle accidents can happen for many reasons, including careless drivers. To discuss your motorcycle accident’s causes and whether you can seek injury compensation for it, contact FVF Law for a free consultation with an experienced Austin motorcycle accident attorney.
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