Switch to ADA Accessible Theme
Close Menu
Richmond Personal Injury Lawyer / Blog / Motorcycle Accident / Common Myths About Motorcycle Crashes

Common Myths About Motorcycle Crashes


Motorcycles are particularly popular vehicles during warmer months in the Richmond area, and many motorcyclists enjoy riding for pleasure and recreation, as well as for transportation. Ter as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) underscores, “motorcycle riders continue to be overrepresented in fatal traffic crashes.” To be sure, motorcyclists do not make up a large portion of motorists on Virginia roads or on roads throughout the country, yet they account for about 15 percent of all reported traffic deaths. And worse, data from the NHTSA shows that the rate of deadly motorcycle accidents has risen significantly in recent years, and in 2022 — the last year of reported data — the rate of motorcycle fatalities was the highest it has been since 1975.

One of the reasons that so many motorcyclists are killed in collisions is that they do not have a clear understanding of motorcycle safety and the risks of riding, according to a report from WRIC Richmond. Recently, as that report discusses, the Highway Safety Office of the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles set out to debunk common myths about motorcycle safety and to help ensure that motorcyclists have the information they need. Our Richmond motorcycle injury attorneys can explain in more detail.

Understanding High Rate of Deaths in Motorcycle Crashes in Virginia 

First, it is critical for motorcyclists to understand the risks associated with riding, and to know about steps they can take to avoid a collision (including a single-vehicle crash). In 2023 alone, there were more than 2,100 collisions involving motorcyclists, and a total of 127 motorcyclists sustained fatal injuries in those crashes. Of those motorcyclists who were killed, many did not have proper safety knowledge or training.

To be sure, as the report highlights, of the thousands of motorcycle owners and Virginia residents with motorcycle licenses, about 25 percent are actually “riding without a motorcycle endorsement.” To clarify, about one-quarter of all people riding motorcycles in the state are not actually licensed to do so. Moreover, more than three-quarters, or 76 percent, of those motorcyclists involved in a collision, had never completed a safety course and thus did not have the appropriate safety training.

Recognizing Common Motorcycle Injury and Accident Myth 

In addition to having knowledge of the data presented above, it is also critical for motorcyclists to recognize that all of the following common assumptions are myths that are not true:

  • Motorcyclists do not need a special license endorsement;
  • Motorcyclists with experience do not need to take a safety course;
  • Safety training is unnecessary if you are wearing safety gear; and
  • Serious and deadly accidents rarely happen on non-interstate roads.

All of the above, to be clear, are false. It is critical for motorcyclists to ensure that they have a special endorsement and have taken proper safety training courses before riding. In addition, motorcyclists should wear safety gear — including a DOT-approved helmet — at all times, and should understand that severe accidents can occur on any type of road and at any speed. Being aware of the risks can help to prevent a serious crash and severe injuries.

 Contact a Richmond Motorcycle Injury Attorney Today

Motorcyclists sustain serious and fatal injuries in collisions at a disproportionate rate when compared to occupants of motor vehicles. Given that warmer weather typically results in more motorcyclists on the roads in and around Richmond, it is important to have detailed and clear knowledge about motorcycle safety. In the event that an accident does occur, it is critical to contact one of the experienced Richmond motorcycle accident lawyers at Latham & Martin as soon as possible to find out about filing a claim. It may be possible to seek compensation through an auto insurance claim, a personal injury lawsuit, or a wrongful death lawsuit depending on the circumstances of the crash.




Facebook Twitter LinkedIn