Fatalities involving motorcycle wrecks increased by more than 200 percent from 1997 to 2009 even though fatalities involving passenger cars and light trucks decreased by 27% during the same period. Concerned about this trend, Congress funded a Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) research project to provide insight into the factors contributing to motorcycle crashes throughout the country. The Motorcycle Crash Causation Study (MCCS) will collect data through 2014 and will be supported by federal agencies, departments of transportation from the various states, local police and the motorcycle industry. The study is the most comprehensive look at the causes of motorcycle crash in more than 30 years, and the final report is expected to be completed in 2015. It is anticipated that the study report may lead to educational programs, new roadway safety measures, and policy decisions based by the data collected in the comprehensive study.
Our motorcycle accident attorneys have seen the devastating effects of motorcycle wrecks that have seriously injured our clients or caused the death of our clients’ loved ones. We encourage all motorcycle owners to take their safety and the safety of their passengers seriously so that wrecks and injuries can be avoided. Safety demonstrations, exhibits and free educational materials will be provided by the Kentucky State Police along with a cook-out and prizes during the Kentucky State Police 6th Annual Motorcycle Safety Awareness Day on Friday, July 26, 2013 at KSP Headquarters in Frankfort.
Even though motorcycle fatalities in Kentucky dropped from 80 in 2010 to 61 in 2011, the number of fatalities increased back up to 78 in 2012. So far in 2013, numerous motorcycle crashes in Kentucky have caused serious injuries or death. After the Scott County sheriff’s department worked three motorcycle crashes in a three-week period that resulted in fatalities, Sheriff Tony Hampton asked the people in Scott County to consider wearing a helmet. Although Kentucky law does not require a motorcyclist to wear a helmet, Sheriff Hampton stated he believed all three of the victims could have survived the wrecks if they had worn helmets.
One of the recent Scott County crashes happened 10 miles north of Georgetown and involved the collision of a pickup truck and a motorcycle and caused a 30-year old man to be thrown off his motorcycle. The rider was not wearing a helmet and died as a result of the wreck.
A motorcycle wreck in Rowan County recently resulted in a 29-year-old Morehead man being critically injured when his motorcycle went off the right shoulder of the road, slipped into a ditch, flipped and came to rest against a fence. The rider later died of his injuries. Another recent crash occurred in Laurel County when a motorcyclist in London lost control on a curve causing his Kawasaki motorcycle to strike a gate post. Although investigators said the rider was wearing a helmet, he was pronounced dead at the scene.
On June 20, a motorcycle struck a tree after running off the road in Hopkins County causing the driver’s death at the scene. A few days earlier in Stanford, a fatal motorcycle crash happened when a vehicle attempted to turn into the path of the motorcycle. The Lincoln County coroner pronounced the motorcycle driver dead at the scene, and the passenger from Danville was airlifted to the University of Kentucky Medical Center. The witnesses to the wreck stated that the motorcyclist did not have time to react to the vehicle turning in front of him. Investigators determined that neither the motorcycle driver nor the passenger was wearing a helmet at the time of the collision.
Another recent fatal motorcycle crash in Jefferson County involved a driver and passenger who were not wearing helmets. The passenger died from multiple injuries and the driver sustained serious head injuries in the collision. Witnesses advised the Louisville Metro Police that the driver of a vehicle apparently did not see the motorcycle and turned into its lane of traffic. A recent deadly crash in Pike County took the life of a woman who was riding as a passenger on a motorcycle. The woman was thrown from the motorcycle after it was hit from the rear by a pickup truck.