When people think of riding a motorcycle, they often imagine a sense of freedom. And there may be nothing more relaxing for a rider than getting out on the open road for a long ride. Unfortunately, that can all end in the blink of an eye when a motorcyclist gets into an accident.

The risk of injury is very real for riders all across Florida. However, knowing what the numbers say about crashes involving motorcyclists can help riders and other motorists make adjustments to their own behaviors to prevent accidents.

Four eye-opening statistics

    1. Motorcyclists die in fatal crashes at a disproportionately high rate. Though they make up just 3 percent of registered vehicles, motorcyclists are involved in 14 percent of deadly accidents.
    2. Intoxication is a factor in roughly one-third of all severe motorcycle accidents.
    3. When other vehicles are involved in a motorcycle crash, the most common reason for an accident is a driver who violated the rider’s right-of-way.
    4. Helmet use cuts the risk of death by half for riders and reduces the risk of head injury by nearly 70 percent.

These statistics highlight the risk that riders face, especially when they are involved in a crash. And there are a few important things everyone can learn from these numbers.

Crucial takeaways

First, it should be clear that wearing protective gear, including a helmet, is essential to a rider’s safety. No matter how safe a rider is, he or she can get into a crash caused by someone else, and the safety equipment could be their only defense against death.

A second lesson we can all learn is that many accidents can be prevented by simply making smarter decisions. Such decisions could include refraining from driving while drunk, staying alert at busy intersections, and obeying speed limits.

A final takeaway is that every person has a role in keeping motorcyclists safe. Riders have a duty to ride safely and comply with traffic laws; motorists must be aware of motorcyclists and share the road responsibly.

Too often, people get overwhelmed by statistics or fail to recognize how the numbers translate to real life. However,  we hope that by looking at these numbers and determining some key takeaways, readers can appreciate the importance of driving and riding safely on Florida roads.