The dangers of being a motorcyclist

By Niamh M. Harris

Riding a motorbike can be extremely dangerous because of how small they are compared to other vehicles. It makes it difficult for drivers of other vehicles to see motorcyclists in their blind spots and thus they are more likely to have an accident with them. There are certain places where motorcyclists are more at risk and it is mainly because of the type of traffic and the type of road which they have to travel amongst and on.

London is an area which is particularly dangerous for motorcyclists just as it is for cyclists. The congested roads of the capital make it much more difficult for other road users to see motorcyclists and so there are more collisions. In the capital there are a large number of motorcyclists who ride in amongst traffic which is very risky as it is very difficult to predict the flow of traffic and the direction which other road users will travel.

It's not only congested roads like in London which present dangers for motorcyclists though. Rural b roads have very changeable road conditions and it is difficult to predict what sort of grip a surface will have. For a car driver, there is time to recover a misread road condition but for motorcyclists there is no room for error and any loss of grip can see them heading either off the road or straight into the path of oncoming traffic.

Junctions are a major danger area for motorbikes because an amazing number of motorists fail to see them approaching in the distance. By the time a driver has checked the opposite direction and started to pull out a motorcyclist can be right on the junction and heading into an unavoidable accident.

Motorcyclists are well aware of the different dangers they face on the roads but they are dangers they are willing to face nonetheless. Some types of road and some cities are more dangerous to motorcyclists than others but in general it is a dangerous mode of transport. Of all deaths and serious injuries on the road, motorcyclists account for around 20 per cent despite only making up around one per cent of all traffic.

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