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Dangers to motorcyclists in Tennessee

Tennessee motorcyclists deserve to know the facts about the dangers that other drivers pose to them on area roads.

The joys of riding on two wheels are almost hard to explain to anyone who has not experienced it. Tennesseans that ride motorcycles have many beautiful areas in which to ride, especially during the long days of summer. Sadly, the presence of cars, trucks and other vehicles can get in the way of enjoying a motorcycle trip.

Do motorcycle crashes happen often?

While there may be no way to quantify how often a motorcycle crash occurs, it takes only a few moments online to get reports of these tragic incidents. Take, for example, a hit-and-run accident the day before the Fourth of July. According to The Leaf Chronicle, a 29-year-old motorcyclist was hit and killed by a driver in a passenger vehicle who then fled the scene. The at-fault driver was later found and arrested. Alcohol is suspected to have been a factor in the wreck.

Just a few days before that, a 24-year-old driver went onto the wrong side of the road and hit a biker, ejecting him from his bike. The 40-year-old motorcyclist died and the vehicle driver now faces vehicular homicide charges. The Tennessean indicates that drugs or alcohol may have been involved.

How many bikers die in Tennessee each year?

In looking at data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, a tragic pattern of motorcyclist deaths emerges. Between 2010 and 2014, a total of 649 riders died. The year with the fewest fatalities was 2011 when 115 bikers lost their lives. The year with the most fatalities was 2012 when 139 people died.

Does wearing a helmet help?

Certainly there is research that shows the importance of wearing a helmet when riding a bike. However, the NHTSA data makes it clear that even this valuable safety item cannot always protect riders. Each year between 2010 and 2014, the vast majority of bikers who died were wearing helmets at the time they crashed. Detailed data shows the following:

  • In 2010, 126 out of 137 killed riders were helmeted.
  • In 2011, 97 out of the 115 bikers who died wore helmets.
  • There were 127 helmeted riders who killed out of 139 who died in 2012.
  • The next year a total of 138 motorcyclists died and 126 were wearing helmets.

In 2014, helmets were worn by 109 bikers and a total of 120 bikers were killed that year.

What factor does age play in motorcyclist deaths?

There is a common misconception that young riders are more likely to be killed in crashes. This stems from the belief that is the recklessness of riders that causes these accidents and that recklessness is often associated with younger riders.

However, the NHTSA data shows that motorcyclists in their 40s had the highest number of deaths between 2010 and 2014 than any other age group.

What should injured riders or their families do after a crash?

Contacting an attorney should be one of the first things that Tennessee accident victims or loved ones should do. When these accidents happen, compensation is important for victims. A lawyer may be able to advise on the best way to seek this compensation.

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Logan-Thompson, P.C., Attorneys at Law
30 2nd St NW
Cleveland, TN 37311

Phone: 423-716-6261
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