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Just how dangerous can a motorcycle accident be?

Of course, being involved in any sort of accident in California can be quite dangerous, but you often hear people talk about the added danger of motorcycle crashes due to the lack of protection for the rider. On a bike, you don't have a seat belt, airbags or a roll cage. You can take much more of the impact with your body, even with protective gear like a helmet and leather.

While you may not have known how much credit to give these claims, studies have actually backed them up quite well. In fact, you are five times more likely to suffer from any injury while riding a bike than you are if you are involved in an accident in a passenger car. If that's not bad enough, being on a motorcycle also means that you are 26 times more likely to be killed in the crash.

The fatality rates are only getting worse. Since the end of the 1990s, fatalities in cars and trucks have been trending continuously downward, with fewer people being killed every year. One would think that motorcycle fatalities may follow the same trend, but the opposite is true. The fatality rate for bikers has gone up so much since 1999 that it is now more than twice what it was back then.

While there are many factors that contribute to these rates and the changes in rate for all types of vehicles, one thing is certain: There is a significant danger when riding a bike. If you are hurt or if a loved one is killed in a crash in California, be sure that you know your legal rights.

Source: FindLaw, "Motorcycle Accidents: Overview" accessed Feb. 20, 2015

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