The number of motorcycle accident fatalities in the United States increased by nine percent in 2012. However, Hawaii’s motorcycle accident fatalities for 2012 were up 27% – triple the national rate of increase. Both figures represent an upward trend in motorcycle usage and fatalities.
A recent study shows that there are more bikers on the road and that motorcycle fatality rates are moving closer to the highest levels ever recorded – despite the fact that the overall number of traffic fatalities is decreasing.
According to a recent Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) study, motorcycle accidents that resulted in fatalities increased nearly nine percent nationally in 2012 compared to 2011 – and triple that (27%) in Hawaii during the same time period. In fact, GHSA analysts say that motorcycle fatality rates are approaching the highest levels ever recorded – across the board.
Motorcyclist fatalities more than doubled from 1997 to 2011 (from 2,116 to 4,612) after a surge in the popularity of motorcycle riding. The total number of traffic fatalities decreased 23% during that same time. According to the GHSA, the reason for the increase in motorcycle accident deaths- especially in Hawaii – is likely due to high gas prices (well over $4.00 per gallon in the Aloha State) causing residents to use more fuel efficient vehicles and to last year’s generally milder winter conditions.
Regardless of whether you’re riding in or around Honolulu, Kaneo, Kopolei, Waipahu or Wahiawa, Hawaii bikers know that our roads and terrain can be dangerous – and as the GHSA study shows, Hawaii has more than its share of motorcycle accidents and fatalities.
Motorcycle accidents can often cause greater trauma and be more debilitating than a car accident due to rider and passenger exposure, and victims often suffer some of the most serious types of injuries, including traumatic brain injuries and spinal injuries.
If you’ve been injured in a Hawaii motorcycle accident or your family has suffered a Hawaii motorcycle death, contact Leavitt, Yamane & Soldner and speak to one of our experienced accident lawyers who can determine whether you might be entitled to compensation for your injuries including lost wages, medical expenses, physical pain and suffering, rehabilitation, loss of consortium and more.