Florida Motorcycle Accident Statistics

a motorcycle and a helmet on the ground after a motorcycle accident

Motorcycles offer a thrilling way to travel on Florida’s roads, and many residents take advantage. Florida ranks 2nd in the nation for states with the highest number of motorcycle owners. However, since their open design means that they offer riders less protection in crashes, motorcycle accidents often have deadly consequences. This is especially true in the Sunshine State. Motorcycle accident fatality rates in Florida have doubled over the past two decades.

As Florida’s motorcycle fatality rates show, motorcycle crashes in the state are a serious problem. As a motorcycle accident law firm, we understand that the period following a motorcycle crash is painful, confusing, and overwhelming. Anyone injured or grieving the loss of a loved one in a motorcycle accident deserves help from someone who knows the best path forward.

Our Florida motorcycle accident lawyer can help explain your legal rights and options as you determine what to do next. Contact our firm today for a free consultation to learn more about how we can help you and your family move forward. 

Florida Motorcycle Accident Statistics

According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV), motorcycle accidents have been common over recent years.

In the most recent full year that data was available, Florida saw:

  • 9,529 total motorcycle accidents
  • 606 deaths from motorcycle accidents
  • 8,194 injuries from motorcycle crashes

According to RideSmart Florida, motorcycle accident fatalities in Florida have more than doubled over the past two decades. They have also risen in proportion to overall traffic deaths. Consider that in a recent five-year period:

  • Just 3 percent of registered vehicles in Florida were motorcycles 
  • Just 2 percent of all traffic accidents in the state involved motorcycles
  • However, 17 percent of all traffic deaths were motorcycle fatalities

What Makes Motorcycle Accidents in Florida So Dangerous?

When you’re driving or riding in a car, you are enclosed by the protective shell of the vehicle. These vehicles are designed to protect the riders from the effects of a crash. Other measures like airbags and seatbelts also help to prevent injuries in serious accidents.

Motorcycle riders, however, do not have these protections. They are vulnerable to the elements and risk being thrown from their bikes and directly coming into bodily contact with moving vehicles. These vulnerabilities help to explain why motorcycle deaths in Florida are among the highest in the nation.

Can I Receive Compensation for my Motorcycle Accident Injuries?

Yes. If you’ve been hurt in a motorcycle crash, you have the right to seek compensation for your injuries and losses through a motorcycle accident claim. 

If you have personal injury protection (PIP) as part of your motorcycle insurance coverage, this can help with your medical bills and lost wages. However, if you do not have this coverage or your damages exceed your policy limits, you can seek additional compensation for your motorcycle accident injuries through a personal injury lawsuit.

Compensation available from a verdict or settlement in a lawsuit breaks down into two categories. The first is economic damages, such as:

  • Medical bills and expenses, including surgery, medication, doctor visits, testing, and physical therapy
  • Future medical and care costs if the injury caused paralysis, paraplegia, or other long-term effects
  • Lost wages if you had to miss work due to your injuries
  • Repair or reimbursement costs if your bike was damaged or totaled in the crash

You might also be entitled to non-economic damages from the motorcycle accident. These compensate for the intangible effects of the accident, such as:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Disfigurement
  • Loss of limb
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Mental anguish
  • Loss of consortium

If you lost a loved one in a fatal motorcycle crash, you can file a wrongful death claim to compensate for your financial losses and emotional trauma. Your motorcycle accident attorney can explain which of these damages you qualify for and how much you might expect to receive in a verdict or settlement. 

Does Florida Have a Helmet Law?

Yes. Under Florida Statute 316.211, riders are required to wear a helmet. There are some exceptions for those riding in an enclosed cab or riding a motorcycle that cannot drive at high speeds. The law also creates an exception for riders over 21 who are “covered by an insurance policy providing for at least $10,000 in medical benefits for injuries incurred as a result of a crash while operating or riding on a motorcycle.”

Regardless of Florida’s helmet laws, motorcycle accident statistics show that helmets are 37 percent effective in preventing motorcycle fatalities. According to the NHTSA, motorcycle helmets saved roughly 25,000 lives over a recent 15-year period. 

Motorcycle Accident Causes

Many motorcycle accidents are caused by other drivers failing to pay attention to the road. Since motorcycles are small compared to cars, vehicle drivers might overlook motorcycles when turning or changing lanes. Motorcycles are also harder to brake and control than cars, so if a car suddenly turns in front of a motorcycle, the rider might have difficulty bringing their bike to a safe stop. 

Other common causes of motorcycle accidents include:

  • Distracted driving
  • Drunk or intoxicated driving
  • Mechanical failures
  • Drivers and riders failing to operate cautiously in inclement weather
  • Speeding
  • Driver or rider inexperience

Your motorcycle accident lawyer can investigate your case to determine which parties were responsible for the crash. 

Most Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries

When motorcycle riders are involved in a crash, they face increased risk of serious injuries, such as:

  • Concussions and traumatic brain injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Paraplegia and quadriplegia
  • Whiplash
  • Road rash
  • Burn and scrape injuries
  • Broken bones
  • Leg and foot injuries
  • Abdominal injuries
  • Muscle and soft tissue injuries
  • Loss of limb
  • Facial injuries
  • Internal bleeding

As such, motorcycle accident victims often need extensive medical care to recover. An experienced motorcycle accident attorney can help you understand your rights and demand the compensation that you are owed to aid in your recovery. 

Need an Experienced Lawyer? Contact Cardoso Law Today

Our lead attorney Ryan M. Cardoso has recovered millions of dollars for people injured in car accidents, motorcycle accidents, medical malpractice, and other forms of personal injury. He’s known throughout Pensacola as a tireless advocate for victims of negligence, and he never backs down from a fight.

To learn more about how our firm can help you recover from a motorcycle accident, submit a contact form today to schedule a free consultation. You pay us nothing until we get results for you.