Motorcycle registrations have increased. With more motorcycles on the road, the risk of injuries has also increased, especially for older riders.
According to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, riders aged 60 and older are more vulnerable to life-threatening injuries or death in a vehicle-motorcycle crash compared to their younger counterparts.
Indulging a passion
Baby boomers remember falling in love with motorcycles while still in their teens. Now, they have the time and wherewithal to indulge their lifelong passion by cruising the open road on their new Harleys, Indians and Yamahas. Unfortunately, older riders face physiological issues that make them more likely to suffer serious injuries in a motorcycle crash. No one is immune: Age impacts our vision, our reflexes, the health of our vital organs and the strength of our bones. In addition, older people carry medical issues, which factors into the treatment of any kind of injury.
In 2016, there were 8.6 million motorcycle registrations nationally. From 2015 to 2016, motorcycle deaths increased by 5.1%. However, the results from breaking down the age groups showed that fatalities among riders aged 60 and older increased over 20% during that period.
A snapshot of Texas statistics
The Texas Department of Transportation figures for 2018 reveal that there were 418 motorcycle crash fatalities and 1,927 suspected serious injuries. Records show that older riders are well represented in these figures, many in their 60s and 70s.
A look at injuries
You may think that head and neck injuries take the lead among motorcycle accident injuries, but they rank second to those of the feet and legs. In a crash, the limbs are often pinned beneath a heavy bike when it rolls over. Experts who study the numbers agree that older riders should continue training to ride safely, keep their skills from getting rusty and steer clear of a stint in the hospital. If the unexpected happens, however, an injured motorcyclist should explore the legal options available. The victim of a vehicle-motorcycle collision has the right to expect full and fair compensation to cover his or her medical expenses and more.