In 2013, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) (PDF) reported 4,668 motorcycle accident fatalities and approximately 88,000 injuries. Due to their relative lack of protection and often not being seen by other drivers, motorcyclists are truly the most vulnerable roadway motorist in the United States.
More than 80% of all reported motorcycle crashes result in injury or death to the motorcyclist.
Below is a list of common medical injuries that can occur as a result of motorcycle accidents.
- Traumatic Brain Injury. TBI is the leading cause of death when it comes to motorcycle accidents. In fact, the NHTSA estimates that wearing a helmet reduces your chances of a fatal accident by 29 percent. Severe brain injury can cause death as well as permanent disability.
- Facial injuries. Helmets can help alleviate the severity of facial injury, but serious accidents still often result in broken jaws and serious facial disfigurement.
- Burn injuries. In a wreck, motorcyclists can receive serious burns from gas tank spillage interacting with other components and causing extremely serious burn injuries that require a skin graft.
- Spinal cord injuries. Injuries to the spinal column occur in up to 12 percent of all motorcycle accidents and can be extremely severe and paralyzing. Unfortunately, many victims of spinal cord injuries can end up being in a wheelchair the rest of their lives and paralyzed from the waist down.
- Emotional trauma. When a person has been in a serious accident, they may suffer serious emotional injuries on top of physical ones. Sometimes, there may need to be counseling, where certain psychological trauma must be addressed. Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can also happen as a result of a very stressful situation such as a motorcycle collision.
- Skin abrasions. Skin abrasions (also known as “road rash”) are extremely common in motorcycle accidents and often occur when the cyclist is thrown off of the bike and skids on the pavement. Wearing proper clothing can help with the severity of the abrasion in the event of a crash.
- Broken bones. Fractured or broken bones are very common in motorcycle accidents and can result in disfigurement or permanent nerve damage if severe enough. Wearing the proper safety equipment can help protect a motorcyclist’s skeletal structure, but the sheer force of the impact may result in broken bones that require intensive surgery or medical treatment anyway.
Have you been injured? Colorado motorcycle accident attorney Mack Babcock can help you receive the compensation you deserve.
If you or a loved one have suffered personal injury in a motorcycle accident you believe was caused by another driver, call Colorado motorcycle wreck attorney Mack Babcock today for a free consultation.
For more information about what to do if you are involved in a motorcycle accident, read: 10 Steps Following a Motorcycle Wreck.
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