Teens in Louisiana and across the U.S. who have obtained their motorcycle license will want to take a few precautions before heading out on the road. Teen motorcyclists file 5.7 more accident claims than those between the ages of 35 and 50, and motorcyclists in general are 35 times more likely to get into accidents than automobile drivers.
A clear day in Louisiana beckons motorcyclists out on the road, but riders must always guard against hazards because they are physically exposed on their vehicles. Personal choices or errors, such as drinking or entering a turn too fast, account for some motorcycle wrecks, but drivers of other vehicles too often simply fail to see motorcyclists, resulting in crashes and injuries or deaths.
Motorcyclists in Louisiana share the road with larger vehicles. Although safety gear somewhat mitigates their physical exposure to accidents, crashes often result in injured riders. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention attributed 30 percent of these injuries to the legs and feet after studying the medical cases of 1,222,000 people involved in nonfatal motorcycle wrecks. Head and neck injuries accounted for the second most common type of injuries.
Louisiana residents may be aware of the dangers of riding a motorcycle. According to a report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report, there were 4,976 deaths caused by motorcycle crashes in 2015. This was an 8.3 percent increase from 2014. Although motorcycle fatalities were up in 2015 compared to 2014, there was a 4.3 percent decrease in the number of motorcycle injuries with a total of 88,000 in 2015.
Louisiana motorcyclists are at risk for hazards that other types of motorists do not encounter. There is no protective barrier between a motorcyclist's body and the road, and other drivers can have difficulties spotting a motorcycle in their mirrors. It is important that motorcycle riders are aware of their legal rights if they are in a traffic accident.
Both beginning and experienced motorcyclists in Louisiana can take steps to protect themselves from injury by understanding the truth behind a number of popular myths. For example, a noisy motorcycle does not let drivers up ahead know that it is approaching. Most of the noise is lost behind the motorcycle. Furthermore, motorcyclists must not assume that they are visible to motorists around them. Riding close to the centerline and wearing reflective clothing can help promote visibility.
Riding a motorcycle in Louisiana is considerably more dangerous than driving a car. The rider has considerably less protection, and many drivers of cars are not accustomed to watching out for motorcycles. This can lead to many serious accidents between cars and motorcyclists. By being aware of some of the most common types of motorcycle accidents, a rider can be better prepared to avoid them.