According to a study by the California Highway Patrol, California motorcyclists suffered 13,381 injuries or fatalities in 2020. Since motorcycles lack some of the safety components found in traditional vehicles, riders risk dealing with different types of injuries. As in any accident, some injuries are more common than others.
Even though California is one of the states that require motorcyclists and their passengers to wear helmets, head injuries are common in motorcycle accidents. Head injuries aren’t always related to speed. Low-speed impacts resulting from turning or braking can potentially cause concussions and other head injuries.
While cars and trucks provide stability to the driver’s neck area, motorcycles do not. Because of that, neck injuries are common in motorcycle accidents. Even mild impact has the potential to cause whiplash or other neck injuries.
Back injuries typically result from an accident in which a motorcycle moving at a high rate of speed strikes a stationary object such as a tree or pole. If a motorcyclist travels at a high rate of speed, they may suffer serious spinal damage in an accident. Spinal injuries can result in chronic back problems, paralysis or even death.
While some types of leg injuries are more prevalent among riders who don’t wear protective gear on their lower extremities, other causes exist. For example, many motorcyclists instinctively put their legs down during an accident. This type of reaction creates the possibility of broken bones, road rash, and other injuries.
According to studies, California had more than 812,000 registered motorcycles in 2021, the second most in the country. Riding safely and wearing protective equipment leads to a safer riding experience for those who choose this method of transportation.