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How Often Do Motorcycle Accidents Occur in Hawaii?

March 9, 2023

Riding a motorcycle is intrinsically riskier than driving a vehicle, and when accidents occur, motorcyclists usually experience severe and sometimes fatal injuries. If you were hurt or lost a loved one in a motorcycle accident in Hawaii, you should contact a Hawaii personal injury attorney immediately.

In fact, the rates of motorcycle accidents are increasing for various reasons, including distracted drivers who fail to see or yield to motorcyclists on the roadway. The severity of motorcycle crashes is heightened by a variety of factors, including:

  • The motorcycle itself offers the rider little to no protection in the case of an accident.
  • The frequency of cyclists being ejected into traffic or onto the road in the event of a collision.
  • The propensity for ejected riders to collide with automobiles or other large objects.

National Motorcycle Accident Data

Statistics indicate that in 80% of motorcycle accidents, the rider is either wounded or killed. 18% of the wounded suffer from some kind of lifelong impairment, and 10% have paralyzing injuries, such as severed and shattered vertebrae.

Most motorcycle accidents are caused by drivers who ignore the road and then drive into the path of a motorcycle or moped. These same motorists often claim that they “didn’t see the biker” or that the rider “must have been speeding” since they were not visible.

The high incidence of motorcycle accidents resulting in severe, catastrophic, or fatal injuries continues to be a critical issue in Hawaii. Hawaii’s ten-year mortality rate is 1,264 fatalities. Although motorcycle accidents have risen across the United States, a survey by the Governor’s Highway Safety Association (GHSA) revealed that Hawaii’s rate of motorcycle accidents is significantly worse.

Motorcycle Accident Rates in Hawaii

According to a recent survey, Hawaii ranked 15th on a list of the worst cities for motorcyclists. Per research provided by traffic experts, 27 collisions per 100,000 people resulted in 94 fatalities.

They examined motorcycle collisions from 2000 to 2019 and compared the crash’s severity, time of day, and whether the driver was inebriated. They discovered that the majority of fatal motorcycle accidents occur in the early evening, peaking between noon and 5:00 p.m.

Furthermore, approximately one-third of motorcycle riders who crashed had alcohol in their system at the time of the accident. They reported that this figure exceeds that of drivers of other kinds of cars.

In addition, almost 40% of motorcyclists involved in fatal collisions were not wearing helmets, and the research found that individuals who chose to ride without a helmet have a greater risk of death.

In 36% of fatal motorcycle accidents, speed was a contributing factor, and 26% of motorcycle riders who crashed did not have a valid license at the time of the accident.

Distracted Driving & Motorcycle Crashes

The driver of a passenger car or truck who pulls into another lane, approaches a traffic signal or stop sign, or turns into another street or highway may not detect the presence of a biker. In the aftermath of an accident, the motorcyclist is often ejected and flung into the road, where other cars may strike him or her.

How to Prevent Motorcycle Accidents

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 80% of all recorded motorcycle collisions end in injury or death. That makes it all the more vital to take every precaution to ensure your safety and the safety of other motorcyclists.

First, get dressed properly. Long trousers and sleeves made of leather or similar thick protective material should be worn, along with gloves, eye protection, and ankle-covering boots. Don’t forget to add layers or invest in heavier, temperature-appropriate apparel when it becomes colder.

Ensure that you are visible to other drivers. Reflective components should be added to both your clothes and bicycle. Day or night, use your headlight. Ride in the portion of the lane where you are most visible to cars, and if you are unsure if a driver has seen you, beep your horn.

Always wear a full-face, Hawaii Department of Transportation-approved helmet, ideally in a bright color for enhanced visibility. Without one, your risk of suffering a traumatic brain injury in a collision is doubled. Replace your motorcycle helmet on a regular basis (as a general rule, every five years) or after an accident.

Be cautious at intersections. Authorities say that 50% of all collisions occur at intersections and busy crossroads. Possibly the most prevalent reason is a driver turning left in front of you; thus, stay on high alert so you can react accordingly.

Never drink or speed. More than 40% of motorcyclists killed in single-vehicle accidents are under the influence of alcohol, and speed is a factor in more than a third of fatal fatalities. Maintaining sobriety and adhering to the speed limit go a long way toward guaranteeing your safe arrival at your destination.

Avoid extreme weather. If you get stranded in inclement weather, you should familiarize yourself with the safest methods to ride in the rain, wind, or any other natural hazard prevalent in your area. If rain is predicted and you must bike, bring rain gear to keep you dry and comfortable.

Get educated. You should enroll in a motorcycle safety course if you are a novice rider. In addition, experienced motorcyclists should attend refresher training. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) provides online and in-person training, some of which may qualify you for an insurance discount.

How Can Other Drivers Prevent Motorcycle Accidents?

A warning to non-motorcycle drivers: collisions involving motorcycles are often the car’s fault. Remember that motorcyclists have the same rights as ordinary motorists. Check your blind spots, indicate your intentions with turn signals, and steer clear of distractions.

Additional advice for motorists who share the road with motorcyclists is as follows:

  • Maintain a safe following distance behind a motorcycle.
  • Give motorcyclists enough space while passing them.
  • Pay special attention to motorcyclists at intersections, particularly while turning left and changing lanes.

Contact a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

A motorcyclist who was injured after being struck by another vehicle should consult with one of our personal injury attorneys. You are entitled to full compensation for injuries caused by another driver. Families who have lost a loved one may also file a wrongful death claim for compensation. Here at Leavitt, Yamane & Soldner, we understand that these incidents are tragic and that the aftermath is exceedingly challenging for everyone involved.

Throughout our years of practice, we have represented numerous injured clients. Our motorcycle accident attorneys in Honolulu are committed to assisting our clients in pursuing justice and full compensation. If we can be of assistance, please get in touch with us at 808-537-2525 for a free consultation.

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