This older man sitting on his motorcycle pulled on the side of the road represents the dangers of older motorcycle drivers

Dangers of Older Motorcycle Drivers

In recent years, motorcycle fatalities have become more and more common. In 2016, there were 5,286 motorcycle fatalities on American roads, making up 14 percent of all deaths on the road during that year. This figure is 5 percent higher than the total for 2015, and more than double the number of motorcycle fatalities 20 years ago.

Surprisingly, accidents have become much more common among older motorcyclists. Back in 1975, 80 percent of those killed in motorcycle crashes were 29 or younger. Those in the 29-and-younger group were far and away the most likely to die in a motorcycle accident. Today, however, motorcyclists aged 50 and over are the most likely to be in fatal accidents—accounting for 35 percent of motorcycle fatalities, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

With one motorcycle for every 36 people in Arizona, motorcycle safety is a serious concern.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, talk to an attorney you can trust. The Khalidi Law Firm has more than 20 years of experience handling Tucson motorcycle accidents.  Contact us today by phone or email for a free consultation.

Why Are Older Motorcyclists More Prone to Accidents?

There are several possible reasons for the rise in the death rate among older motorcyclists. One possible reason is that Baby Boomers make up a huge part of the population. There were about 76 million Americans born between 1946 and 1964, so the demographics alone could be one reason why older motorcyclists are overrepresented in terms of motorcycle deaths.

Another possibility is that retirees who had motorcycles in their 20s might have stopped riding when they started families. Now they’re coming back to their motorcycles in their 50s or 60s, with rusty skills. According to Terry Redman of the Cycle Rider Safety Training Program, “We have older operators getting on these huge motorcycles and not being able to handle them. They’re getting themselves killed.”

A third reason is simple aging. Older motorcyclists have slower reaction times and are more vulnerable to everyday riding worries like overheating, dehydration, and variability of blood sugar. All these factors together mean that even though older motorcyclists are generally much more careful than young people, they’re also more prone to catastrophic accidents.

Motorcycle safety courses are one possibility for motorcyclists who want to maintain their safety. However, older motorcyclists often don’t realize their skills aren’t what they used to be, which makes them less interested in taking safety classes to brush up. Safety measures, such as safety courses and wearing helmets, can go a long way toward reducing the death rate among older motorcyclists.

Involved in a Motorcycle Accident? Get Legal Help.

The Khalidi Law Firm has more than 20 years of experience helping injured Tucson motorcyclists recover compensation from negligent drivers. If you were seriously injured while riding your motorcycle, contact the Tucson motorcycle accident lawyers at The Khalidi Law Firm for a free consultation. Call us or contact us online today.