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Lewis & Tompkins

Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries

David E. Tompkins
Car Accident, Bicycle Accident and Pedestrian Accident Attorney for Maryland, D.C. and Virginia
Because motorcycles lack many of the safety features of larger vehicles (such as airbags, roll bars, and seatbelts) the chance of incurring a serious injury in a motorcycle accident is much higher than the chance of becoming seriously injured in a car or truck accident. In fact, motorcycle riders have a 98% chance of serious injury when involved in a multiple-vehicle accident and a 94% chance of serious injury when involved in a single-motorcycle wreck. In comparison, only 45% of those involved in a car or truck accident incurred more than minor injuries.

What are the most common injuries seen in motorcycle accidents?

· Concussion and permanent brain damage. Bikers are often thrown from their motorcycles during an accident, and often land on their head or hit their head during the collision. Well-fitting approved helmets will often reduce the chance or severity of injury, though traumatic brain injuries are still common when proper gear is worn.

· Biker's arm. In many motorcycle accidents, the rider will land on one or both of his or her arms, resulting in permanent nerve damage in the upper body. This debilitating condition is known as biker's arm

· Soft tissue damage. Also known as "Road Rash," soft tissue damage will occur when a rider is knocked off of his or her bike and slides along pavement or gravel. Road rash can be protected against by wearing protective clothing while riding, such as leather gear or reinforced denim. Road rash can lead to permanent scarring.

· Facial disfigurement. When not wearing the proper head gear, riders' faces may also come into contact with the chin bar of the bike, leading to permanent disfigurement. The famous Hurt Report found that 35% of bike accidents include this type of injury.

· Broken joints. The violent impacts associated with bike accidents often lead to broken spines, elbows, hips, and wrists. The two most common breakages occur in the pelvis and shoulder.