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Study Finds Motorcycle Accidents Rise with Pump Prices

by on January 23, 2015

As gas prices rise, many drivers turn to smaller and more fuel-efficient vehicles to save on transportation costs. But a new study recently discovered a dangerous consequence of high gas prices: a rise in motorcycle fatalities and injuries. The Phoenix motorcycle accident lawyers at Wattel & York encourage drivers to proceed with caution no matter what the prices are at the pumps.

More choose motorcycles as gas prices surge

The journal Injury Prevention recently published a study focusing on motorcycle accident-related injuries in California between 2002 and 2011. The researchers found a close relationship between increasing gas prices and a rise in the number of both fatal and non-fatal motorcycle accidents.

The study’s authors examined data from California’s Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System to estimate the impact of gasoline prices. They concluded that as gas prices rose, more motorists chose to ride motorcycles, leading to an additional 800 fatalities and 10,290 non-fatal injuries in California between 2002 and 2011. The study’s authors concluded that more safety and driver education is needed to curb the trend.

Why Phoenix motorcycle accidents are so serious

According to a 2013 study in Research in Transportation Economics, which examined the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration’s traffic accident data, motorists are more likely to die on motorcycle than on any other mode of transportation. Motorcycle accidents accounted for almost 10% of all highway fatalities, while motorcycles made up only 3% of the vehicles on the road.

In 2013, there were over 3,000 motorcycle accidents in Arizona and more than three quarters of the accidents occurred in rural areas like Phoenix. In fact, Maricopa County was home to more than half of all of the state’s 2013 motorcycle accidents and the majority of the fatal motorcycle crashes. And compared to car and SUV drivers, motorcyclists are much more likely to be seriously injured.

The majority of motorcycle accidents end in injury or death, in part because motorcycles offer far less physical protection than an automobile. A car driver, for example, is surrounded by a steel cage and planted more firmly on the road with a low center of gravity and four wheels instead of two. Automobiles are also more visible so they are less likely to be struck by other drivers.

Some injuries that motorcycle accident victims commonly suffer include death, paralysis, head and brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and fractures. It goes without saying that these types of serious injury affect not only the accident victim but his or her family and friends.

Phoenix motorcycle accident lawyers at Wattel & York can help

While the damage of a serious motorcycle cannot be undone, compensation may be available to help you on the path to recovery. If you or a loved one were seriously injured in a motorcycle accident, you may be entitled to reimbursement for:

  • Past and future medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Funeral expenses
  • Loss of companionship

The team at Wattel & York offers experienced advice and counsel, along with tireless advocacy, for those who have been injured in an auto accident in Arizona. Call 1-877-5562 to schedule a free, no-obligation case evaluation by one of our Phoenix injury lawyers.


1. Injury Prevention, The relationship between gasoline price and patterns of motorcycle fatalities and injuries,
2. Arizona Department of Transportation, Arizona Motor Vehicle Crash Facts,
3. Journalist’s Resource, U.S. transportation safety over time: Cars, planes, trains, walking, cycling,

Find more like this: Car Accidents, Personal Injury , , ,

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