CHP Reports Increase in Motorcycle Accident Fatalities

Motor vehicle accident rates in California fluctuate for many reasons. For instance, car accident rates tend to rise at certain times of the year due to traffic volume, increases in drunk driving, or weather-related factors. On a recent year-to-year basis, car and truck accident rates have been affected both by increased use of cell phones and texting devices, as well as state laws that prohibit certain types of distracted driving behavior.

A recent rise in the number of motorcycle fatalities in California has been attributed to other factors. Increased popularity of motorcycles due to their superior fuel efficiency and popularity among recreational riders has caused California motorcycle registrations to nearly double in the past decade. California currently has more than one million motorcycle riders registered to ride on its streets and highways.

Data from the California Highway Patrol's Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System shows a 20 percent increase in the number of motorcyclists killed from 2010 to 2011. The rise from 348 to 411 California biker deaths is the first increase since 2008, when 529 motorcyclists died, as opposed to 465 in 2007.

The long term trends are even more troubling. Over the decade ending in 2007, motorcyclist fatalities increased 132 percent, and biker injuries increased more than 75 percent. Motorcycle safety advocates are concerned that an annual toll of several hundred fatalities and 10,000 or more injuries is the unacceptable new normal.

Fighting for the Rights & Safety of Motorcycle Riders

In a recent press release, the CHP announced the latest statistics and called on all motorists to focus on strategies for preventing future tragedies. "By looking twice, you may save the life of a motorcyclist," CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow cautioned Californians when announcing the rise in motorcycle accidents. Just as important, awareness that car and truck drivers share the road with much more vulnerable bikers reduces the chance of life-altering brain trauma and spinal injuries.

Determinations of fault and liability in the aftermath of a motorcycle crash are a crucial step in helping accident victims and wrongful death survivors seek appropriate compensation for their losses. Only a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer who specializes in handling motorcycle accidents can provide the expertise necessary to establish liability in difficult accident scenarios. Furthermore, only attorney experienced in handling significant injury claims can present your case in a way that maximizes your financial recovery from the negligent drivers responsible for causing you harm.