Fatal motorcycle accidents are increasing in New York, so much so that the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee issued a statement promoting motorcycle safety tips for riders and other motorists. Motorcycles offer New York riders an unparalleled sense of freedom and adventure. However, these vehicles lack the essential safety features like airbags and seatbelts that are standard on other motor vehicles. If you’re a motorcycle rider, your helmet is the only thing between you and a significant injury following a collision with a careless driver.
At Finz & Finz, P.C., we know that analyzing the latest New York motorcycle accident statistics can raise alarm bells. However, understanding your risk, learning more about New York’s insurance system, and knowing who to turn to if the unthinkable happens can prepare you for what’s ahead.
Our experienced New York motorcycle accident legal team proudly represents motorcyclists injured in accidents with careless motorists. We’ll work with you to address your concerns and fight to recover the money you deserve. Discuss your options for seeking financial compensation with one of our attorneys today. Contact our office for your free case review.
New York Motorcycle Accident Statistics
It is perhaps one of the most tragic motorcycle accident statistics today. Although motorcyclists make up a small percentage of registered vehicle owners on the road, they are overrepresented in fatal traffic accidents. Statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicate motorcyclists represent 14% of all traffic fatalities. In 2021, 5,932 motorcyclists died in traffic collisions nationwide.
New York City motorcycle accident statistics reflect the same trends as national accidents. A New York City Motorcycle Safety Study found that only 2% of registered vehicles in New York City are motorcycles. However, motorcyclists accounted for 14% of all traffic fatalities. A Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee press release warned of the significant rise in fatal motorcycle crashes in the city. Their data showed that in 2021, 204 individuals died in fatal motorcycle accidents in New York State. The committee also warns that fatal motorcycle crashes were up by at least 50% in 2021 compared to 2019.
As of March 2023, New York City recorded 168 motorcycle accidents. Brooklyn had the most motorcycle accidents at 47, followed by Queens with 46. The Bronx rounded out the top three with 43 recorded motorcycle crashes.
There is one more statistic to consider. Generally, individuals with legal representation recover more compensation than those without help. Pursuing a motorcycle accident claim in New York can be complicated. Help from a knowledgeable attorney can improve your chances of achieving a more favorable outcome.
Common Causes of New York Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycle accidents can occur for many reasons, although the most common is driver error. Careless motorists who ignore their surroundings can cause motorcycle riders a lifetime of physical and financial complications. Some of the most common causes of New York motorcycle accidents tend to include:
- Aggressive driving
- Distracted driving
- Drunk driving
- Failure to yield the right-of-way
- Fatigued driving
- Left-hand turn accidents
- Unsafe lane changes
Poor visibility, inclement weather conditions, and mechanical defects are also factors that may contribute to significant motorcycle accidents.
Common Injuries Sustained in Motorcycle Accidents
One of the best ways to protect yourself from careless New York City drivers is to wear a helmet. Head injuries are one of the most common injuries sustained in motorcycle accidents. However, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, wearing a helmet can reduce your risk of head injury by 69%. A helmet also reduces your chances of dying in a motorcycle crash by 37% for riders and 41% for passengers.
You can protect yourself from injury by wearing the proper gear. In addition to a DOT-approved motorcycle helmet, as New York law requires, riders should wear sturdy boots, gloves, and leather apparel or chaps. This gear can help partially protect you from some of the most common motorcycle accident injuries, including:
- Broken bones
- Dental injuries
- Facial injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Organ damage
- Road rash
- Soft tissue damage
- Spinal injuries
- Traumatic brain injury
Unfortunately, motorcycles do not have the same safety features as full-sized vehicles. An accident with a careless driver can leave you with severe physical and emotional injuries. To recover the compensation you deserve, it is always wise to consult with a New York motorcycle accident attorney.
New York Motorcycle Insurance Requirements
New York follows a unique no-fault car insurance system. Under the no-fault car insurance system, a person injured in an auto accident must file an insurance compensation claim with their insurance provider, not the at-fault driver’s insurer. Their personal injury protection or PIP insurance typically covers reasonable and necessary medical expenses and a portion of your lost wages. However, no-fault coverage does not extend to motorcyclists or their passengers in New York, making the insurance claim process for a motorcyclist confusing and more challenging.
Although no-fault coverage does not apply to motorcycle riders, New York does require motorcyclists to carry certain minimum policy coverage. Without the minimum coverage, the New York DMV can suspend your registration and driver’s license. Minimum liability coverage requirements are:
- $10,000 property damage for a single accident
- $25,000 for bodily injury and $50,000 for death for one person involved in an accident
- $50,000 for bodily injury and $100,000 for death for two or more people involved in an accident
Regardless of how often you operate your motorcycle, these coverage guidelines must remain in effect for as long as your motorcycle’s registration is valid.
Injured in a Motorcycle Accident? Talk to an Experienced New York Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Handling a New York motorcycle accident claim can be overwhelming and challenging. At Finz & Finz, P.C., our experienced legal team is committed to pursuing the compensation people injured in motorcycle accidents caused by others need to cover their financial losses.
Discuss your unique situation with a skilled New York motorcycle accident attorney for free. Contact Finz & Finz, P.C. online or call 855-TOP-FIRM today to arrange your confidential, no-obligation case review. We can discuss your legal options and your next steps.