I’m sure it will come as no surprise to my readers (and to anyone with common sense) that injuries sustained in motorcycle accidents tend to be much more severe than in other types of traffic accidents.
One indication of this fact is that motorcycle accident statistics suggest that motorcyclists are 35 times more likely to sustain fatal injuries in a crash.
In addition, there are a number of injuries that are unique to motorcycle riders due to the nature of the bikes themselves and the risks inherent in riding them. As a long time Pennsylvania motorcycle accident lawyer, I have seen the devastating effects of the following injuries over and over throughout my career.
Motorcycle accident statistics indicate common injuries
Concussions and Brain Damage
According to motorcycle accident statistics gathered by the Highway Traffic Safety Administration, head injuries are the most common cause of fatalities in motorcycle wrecks. The majority of these deaths are a result of the rider not wearing a helmet.
However, even with a helmet you are at some risk for concussion or brain damage from the impact of your head on the inside of the helmet. If you’re involved in an accident and hit your head, be on the alert for unusual headaches, dizziness, difficulty maintaining balance, and even difficulty swallowing.
These symptoms don’t necessarily show up immediately. Depending on the extent of the damage, epilepsy, memory loss, difficulty processing languages, depression and other long term effects can manifest themselves also.
The term Biker’s Arm refers to paralysis or nerve damage sustained from the impact to the upper arm of a biker falling off his or her motorcycle.
This injury is common because the biker’s natural human instinct is to draw the arms in front of, or around themselves for protection. This reaction means that the upper arms absorb most of the initial impact with the ground, and often takes the body weight of the rider as well.
Elbow pads or a leather jacket may help protect the rider.
Broken bones are among the most common injuries sustained during crashes.
Motorcycle accident statistics indicate that elbows, shoulder breaks, and pelvic fractures are the most common types of broken bone injuries. Finger, wrist, knee, and spinal fractures are less common but can also lead to permanent disability, or paralysis.
Broken toes and bones in the feet are also fairly common due to the use of inadequately protective footwear.
Here’s the formula for Road Rash: pavement or concrete, plus skin, plus velocity.
If severe enough, this injury can lead to exposed nerves, muscle, or even bones. Long term effects can include permanent nerve damage or infections. Thick, heavy clothing such as a leather jacket and gloves, or reinforced denim is the best preventative measure you can take.
While not typically fatal, leg, knee and foot injuries are also very common in motorcycle accidents. Besides broken bones and road rash, scrapes, severe bruising, nerve damage deep cuts and other skidding-related injuries may result.
Protective clothing such as long pants and motorcycle boots are recommended.
Motorcycle accident statistics indicate that more than 35% of motorcycle crashes involve a major impact to the rider’s face. The most effective protection against permanent disfigurement is a full face helmet.
As you can see, with almost every one of these common injuries, proper personal protective equipment is one of the top recommendations for reducing the severity of these wounds. However, if you are in an accident and sustain serious injury, a qualified and experienced motorcycle injury lawyer can help you recover damages for medical bills, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering.
Pennsylvania motorcycle lawyer Lee D. Gaber, Esq. can answer your questions regarding motorcycle accident statistics, common injuries, insurance and other topics.
Call me now for your free PA or NJ consultation at 1-888-292-5352, 24/7.