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Texas motorcyclists more likely to be in accidents

Motorcycle accidents can be very dangerous and motorcyclists in Texas face the risk of being in a crash every time they ride. While everyone on the road is at risk to be in an accident, motorcyclists have continued to be injured or killed in accidents at a much higher rate than other drivers in Texas, according to the state transportation department.

The state reported that the oil boom in Texas has led to an increase in all types of accidents, including motorcycle accidents. In 2012, fatalities increased by 47 percent in the Odessa region of Texas, with over 10 percent of fatal accident victims being motorcyclists or passengers on motorcycles.

Why do motorcyclists have such an increased risk of being injured or killed in an accident? The main factors come down to motorcycles being smaller than other vehicles on the road. Drivers have a difficult time seeing motorcycles and when they do, some drivers aren't able to tell how fast the motorcycle is truly moving, giving them the false belief that they can still safely pull out or pass the motorcycle. Because of the size of motorcycles and the lack of protection they offer during a crash, motorcyclists and passengers are more likely to suffer severe or fatal injuries after a motorcycle accident.

To address the increased risk motorcyclists face in Texas, the Texas Department of Transportation has started the Share the Road safety campaign to raise awareness for all drivers to be aware of motorcycles on the road. The campaign also focuses on what safety precautions motorcyclists can take to prevent being in an accident, such as making themselves more visible, obeying traffic laws and wearing a helmet.

Source: OA Online, "Regional motorcyclists die in crashes at higher rate than other drivers," Corey Paul, March 13, 2013

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