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A quick look at motorcycle accident trends

As warmer weather approaches, more Tennessee motorcyclists are hitting the open road. It is crucial for motorists and motorcyclists alike to know how to share the road safely in order to avoid tragic accidents from occurring. In 2014 alone, 4,586 people were killed and 93,000 people were injured in motorcycle accidents across the U.S., according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Although the motorcycle accident fatality rate decreased by 2.3 percent from the year before, injuries rose by 4.5 percent.

When comparing the number of miles that were traveled by motorcycles with those of motor vehicles, motorcycle accident deaths exceeded car accident fatalities by 26 times. Motorcycles lack many of the safety devices that vehicle have, including airbags, seatbelts and a steel structure that acts as a barrier between the driver and the road.

When it comes to motorcycle safety, there are some crucial components that bikers should be aware of. Motorcyclists who wear a helmet while riding can decrease their risk of receiving traumatic brain damage by 67 percent or dying in an accident by as much as 37 percent, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. It was reported that 1,669 lives were saved in 2014 because of motorcycle helmet use. All motorcyclists are required to wear a helmet in Tennessee. Furthermore, motorcycles that have antilock braking systems reduce the risk of fatal collisions by 31 percent as opposed to motorcycles that lack these safety devices.

Negligent motorists also put motorcyclists in danger. Drivers who fail to see bikers or yield to their right of way may be at fault for causing a tragic motorcycle accident. 

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