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Top Bike Crash Scenarios Listed

What’s the most common scenario for a motorcycle crash? Common wisdom suggests junctions, which are certainly high on the list for road crashes in general, but when it comes to which vehicle types top which type of crash location, a different picture emerges.

According to a study from Forbes Advisor, using Department for Transport road casualty data for 2012-2021, motorcycles were the most common vehicle type to crash in five different scenarios. These were: failing to make a left-hand bend (ie going straight on), the same for a right-hander and three different overtaking scenarios – overtaking on the nearside, and overtaking a moving or static vehicle on the offside.

Most common of these for bikes was offside overtaking when the other vehicle was moving (14,324 collisions). Bikes were also involved in just over 10,000 collisions while slowing or stopping, but this was also a common category for other vehicle types. Although motorcycles accounted for only 8.01% of all collisions, they made up one in three when it came to overtaking on the offside. Food for thought about where we are most at risk.

Jim Freeman, Chair of the BMF, said: “I’ve always been led to believe the failure to make a bend as being the biggest single motorcycle accident, as in involving only one vehicle. The classic ‘freeze up’ situation where a rider realises that they’re on the wrong line going into a much tighter bend than was anticipated. Many riders don’t realise just how far over they can lean, bluntly, and the importance of correct lines when cornering. My recommendation would be track time and going to the mountains as often as possible. Overtaking? No surprises there either. I’d recommend an advanced riding course, Blue Riband is the BMF’s chosen favourite, see the list on the website, for local courses near you.”

Written by Peter Henshaw

Top image courtesy of Peter Henshaw