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 Motorcycle Safety
 General Discussion
 The Remarkable Decline in Motorcycle Crash Rate
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DataDan
Advanced Member
567 Posts
[Mentor]


Central Coast, CA
USA

Yamaha

FJR1300

Posted - 08/01/2018 :  11:45 AM                       Like
Over the past 30 years, motorcyclist crash risk in the US has dropped by nearly half. Whether measured as annual crashes per 1000 registered bikes (shown in the table that follows) or crashes per million miles traveled, the crash rate is down 45%. Though earlier records are sparse, it is reasonable to conclude that we are now safer than at any time in the past.

When motorcycle safety makes the news, we usually hear about the growing number of crashes and deaths, an inevitable and sometimes tragic result of the soaring popularity of the sport. The good news that, on average, we are safer than riders a generation ago has gone unreported. I would like to correct that.

US Motorcycle Crash Rate

3-year moving average..............crashes
..................................per 1000
...........regs........crashes....... regs

1990.....4,421,389.....108,487........24.5
1991.....4,285,749.....103,137........24.1
1992.....4,167,315......94,720........22.7
1993.....4,073,446......84,844........20.8
1994.....3,920,367......72,595........18.5
1995.....3,821,004......70,473........18.4
1996.....3,785,464......67,661........17.9
1997.....3,821,546......65,555........17.2
1998.....3,859,020......61,718........16.0
1999.....3,924,591......59,100........15.1
2000.....4,065,137......61,511........15.1
2001.....4,336,080......67,805........15.6
2002.....4,636,562......74,286........16.0
2003.....5,003,377......77,896........15.6
2004.....5,362,341......82,336........15.4
2005.....5,781,591......90,630........15.7
2006.....6,225,091......98,256........15.8
2007.....6,681,527.....110,110........16.5
2008.....7,343,234.....113,626........15.5
2009.....7,760,156.....114,237........14.7
2010.....8,050,498.....105,308........13.1
2011.....8,125,576.....100,570........12.4
2012.....8,300,648.....102,624........12.4
2013.....8,432,392.....105,974........12.6
2014.....8,425,797.....109,630........13.0
2015.....8,474,463.....106,446........12.6
2016.....8,566,011.....114,037........13.3



After noting this improvement in another thread a few months ago, I dug deeper, wondering what factors might have driven it. I have found a few promising candidates, and when I have time available, I will post additional details I uncover in this thread. Here are the significant changes I have found so far:
  • An older riding population. Older motorcyclists, like older drivers, crash less than the young. And average owner age has increased from 32 to 47.

  • Less drinking-and-riding. Alcohol use by riders in crashes is down by half.

  • Less speeding. Motorcycle speed as a crash contributor down by 40%.

  • Sharing the road with a less crash-prone fleet of vehicles.

  • Possibly a change in the kinds of crashes we have--crossing vehicle vs. roadway departure, for example. More work required.
It is possible, too, that the training that has become available since the 1980s has made us more capable riders. While this is an appealing claim, supported by my own experience, there is no data to confirm it. Also from my experience, the informal dissemination of riding knowledge has been a great benefit. Books, magazines, and the internet have all contributed. Worth noting in particular is this website. Mr. Davis has made available a wealth of knowledge about riding a motorcycle well.

However, there is another aspect to the evolution of riding safety since the 1980s. Crashing, while now less likely, is also more often deadly. Crash lethality--the percentage of crashes that result in motorcyclist death--has increased substantially. That's a subject for a different thread.



In this thread, I will explain how I arrived at the numerical results I post. There may be disagreements on conclusions I will draw, but I hope we can agree on the arithmetic.

My main source of data in this thread for non-fatal crashes will be NHTSA's General Estimates System (1988-2015) and Crash Report Sampling System (2016).

The crash rate table above is derived from GES, CRSS, and FHWA (Federal Highway Administration--publishes data on registrations and vehicle-miles traveled) that appears in NHTSA's Traffic Safety Facts Annual Report Tables 3 and 10. The unit of measure is motorcycles involved in crashes, not crashes or victims.

James R. Davis
Male Administrator
17328 Posts
[Mentor]


Houston, TX
USA

Honda

GoldWing 1500

Posted - 08/01/2018 :  12:20 PM Follow poster on Twitter  Join poster on Facebook as Friend  
Thank you for your comment referencing me, and for another of your valuable and informative posts. I agree with your findings and cannot imagine anybody finding fault with either your data or your analysis.

I would, however, like to comment that Cash and I have just recently discussed that we are seeing substantially fewer riders on the road than we used to just a couple of years ago. Certainly there are lots of solo riders out there, though not as many as there used to be, and more often than not they are speeding and darting from lane to lane, but groups of riders are now quite rare. We see lots of Harley-Davidson riders in group rides (again, fewer than before), but GoldWing group rides seem to have disappeared. This may simply be a peculiarity to our way of 'seeing things', or our environment, but I wonder if others have noticed this as well.

Incidentally, we hardly ever see any large scooters on the freeways anymore and only infrequently do we see any size scooters on surface streets. Contrarily, we have seen an increase in the number of small motorcycles (small wheels and/or small engines) on surface streets.
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Eagle Six
Starting Member
9 Posts


Snowflake, Arizona
USA

Kawasaki

ZX14R

Posted - 08/01/2018 :  2:17 PM
quote:
Originally posted by James R. Davis

I would, however, like to comment that Cash and I have just recently discussed that we are seeing substantially fewer riders on the road than we used to just a couple of years ago. Certainly there are lots of solo riders out there, though not as many as there used to be, and more often than not they are speeding and darting from lane to lane, but groups of riders are now quite rare. We see lots of Harley-Davidson riders in group rides (again, fewer than before), but GoldWing group rides seem to have disappeared. This may simply be a peculiarity to our way of 'seeing things', or our environment, but I wonder if others have noticed this as well.


Short answer: Yes

Long answer explanation: My answer is in reference to my rural area, where the largest nearby town is about 11,000. We are located about 200 miles NE of the Phoenix Metro.

My observation and opinion with no science whatsoever: The most common group rides in this area are the benefit bar-to-bar poker runs. They are 100% Harley cruiser type bikes with only two bike exceptions, a BMW sport-tourer and a ZX14, otherwise they are all 'potato-potato' bikes. Less this year than last, and less last year than the previous years.

Although many of these bikes are the same bikes and the same riders for the past few years, it seems they have become less safe, in my opinion. It's to the point me and the wife will join the benefit and ride at least some of the course, but we avoid riding in the group or small groups. The longer the ride, the more bar stops, the more they consume and the more hazardous they become. Not all, but I would venture to guess more than 50% are under the influence by the first or second stop. I would guess the age range is about 40-70 years old.

In contrast I join up with a few sport bike riders several times a year. These are riders half my age and I refer to them as kids, 25-35 years old. They wear more gear, better gear, and are more respectful on and off their bikes. When the conditions are good, no traffic and we have cleared the road, we ride fast. When there is traffic we pull off and take a break. When we are in town traffic, coming and going to the twisties, they keep the formation spaced, speed down, and pay attention to traffic. It's somewhat opposite of the experience I have had in other areas in years past, when the tourers, sport-tourers and hogs held a safe group formation and it was the crotch rocket jockeys screaming in and out causing mayhem!

I occasionally see small 2-4 rider groups of adventure or sport-tour bikes passing through our area on longer rides, but have not seen a GoldWing group ride in over two years.

The other observation I have made based on hundreds of local rides and several local groups/clubs....there are very few in this area who are interested in riding to ride, rather they are most interested in riding to events, and usually that event concludes with a music concert type evening at a bar!

Just my observations, based obviously on my small town country area, probably a small bit of bias.

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rkfire
Advanced Member
1713 Posts


Stratford, CT
USA

Suzuki

Bandit

Posted - 08/02/2018 :  10:07 AM   Join poster on Facebook as Friend  
Goes to show differences in geography. I don't think I ever saw a group of Goldwings. Packs of Harleys is daily, and sportbike/stunter guys. Often see a couple Harleys with a couple sportbikes if it's 3-4-5 bikes. Scooters are everywhere, but mostly the 50cc kind not needing a plate.

Here helmets are not mandatory, but, where once I'd really never see the Harley guys wear them, I am now seeing more and more wearing fullface helmets. Not the majority but, good for them to not care about fashion.

The motorcycling group may indeed be aging and riding more aware, with less risk taking. I recollect the bike magazines of the 60's and 70's never having any safety articles or tips. I "think" the first time I read about counter steering was in a magazine in the 80's.

Not at all challenging the data, but in my small world of CT., it sure seems like hearing of fatal crashes being more common than ever. But then again, could be the availability of news/talk/internet making me aware of crashes I would not hear about in the past.
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DataDan
Advanced Member
567 Posts
[Mentor]


Central Coast, CA
USA

Yamaha

FJR1300

Posted - 08/02/2018 :  1:58 PM
quote:
Originally posted by rkfire

Here helmets are not mandatory, but, where once I'd really never see the Harley guys wear them, I am now seeing more and more wearing fullface helmets. Not the majority but, good for them to not care about fashion.

Helmet use in crashes (as reported in NHTSA's GES and CRSS databases--see my post above for links) was up to 71% in 2016--in spite of helmet law repeals that have left only 40% of registered motorcycles in all-rider helmet law states. The crash usage percentage has risen fairly steadily from 60% in the mid-1990s, with temporary drops quickly regained. My impression, similar to yours, is that on motorcycles where I would have expected a minimal helmet 10 years ago, I now see full-face.

quote:
Not at all challenging the data, but in my small world of CT., it sure seems like hearing of fatal crashes being more common than ever. But then again, could be the availability of news/talk/internet making me aware of crashes I would not hear about in the past.

Connecticut has been steady at around 50 deaths per year for the past 10 years. I think perception probably is due to news coverage. I have monitored California motorcycle news stories daily for 15 years and see large discrepancies between what I know from the data and what I see in the news. For example, Los Angeles County probably has more motorcyclist deaths than any other county in the nation, but you wouldn't know it from the infrequent stories I see. In smaller counties, however, where the papers really do cover local news, most if not all are reported.
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DataDan
Advanced Member
567 Posts
[Mentor]


Central Coast, CA
USA

Yamaha

FJR1300

Posted - 08/07/2018 :  9:28 AM
Registrations, Crashes, and Rate--A more detailed look

This graph displays the data in the table in my first post--registrations, crashes and the crash rate over 26 years--to help visualize the phenomenon:



One interesting feature is growth from the mid-1990s until the Recession (blue line), when registrations doubled from 4 million to 8 million. At the same time, registrations of passenger vehicles (cars and light trucks) grew by only 50%. Motorcycling, at a low in the early '90s, once again became a thing. Just an aside: While growth was robust in this period, it was nothing compared to 1960-1980, when registrations went from less than a half-million to over 5 million.

Of course, as a few million more of us took up motorcycling, more of us crashed, too (red line). However, even at the pre-Recession peak, crashes only just topped the numbers seen in the late 1980s. That is reflected in the crash rate (gray shaded area), dropping sharply at first, flattening, then dropping again.

This thread is basically looking at why the crash rate decreased so significantly in the past 20 years. But as the rate graph shows, it didn't decrease uniformly. Why is that? Obviously, crash count is driven by growth--more bikes, more crashes. My speculation (since I have no data to back it up) is that the crash rate is also affected by growth and decline. As the popularity of motorcycling falls, there are fewer noobs among us, and average experience rises. As it grows, there are more noobs and, consequently, lower average experience. And one thing we know from both Hurt and MAIDS is that crash risk goes down with experience. Thus, when the sport was fading in the early '90s, experienced riders with lower crash risk remained. When it took off in the late '90s, inexperienced riders increased average risk in the population.

But the increase due to growth occurred against a background of other influences that were pushing crash risk down. That will be the subject of later posts. Stay tuned to this thread for more.



The measure of exposure to motorcycling risk I am using in calculating the crash rate is registered bikes. Some may object, arguing that vehicle-miles traveled is a better measure. And it probably is, at least when good estimates are available. However, in practice, for the purposes of this analysis, the difference is small:



In fact, the two rates run parallel in the period under discussion. And due to a problem in the motorcycle VMT estimates produced by the Federal Highway Administration, the VMT rate is incomplete.



The data used to produce these graphs is available on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's website, specifically from the page Traffic Safety Facts Annual Report Tables. Table 3 (under "Trends") includes the number of motorcycles involved in crashes. Table 10 (same heading) includes the registration and VMT estimates. I have used a 3-year moving average to smooth out year-to-year variation. The problem with motorcycle VMT estimates is discussed by the National Transportation Safety Board here (PDF).
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DataDan
Advanced Member
567 Posts
[Mentor]


Central Coast, CA
USA

Yamaha

FJR1300

Posted - 08/09/2018 :  10:13 AM
Older riders are safer riders

Over the past 25 years, motorcyclist age profile has changed dramatically. In 1990, 45% of owners were under 30 years of age while less than 10% were 50 or over. Now, only 19% of owners are under 30 and 46% are 50 or older. As owner age increased, so did the age of those who crashed. The youngest group went from 65% of crash-involved riders to 33%, the oldest group from 5% to 30%.

What used to be a young person's sport has become a middle-aged sport. The graph below shows this aging, the lines representing owner age group divisions, the bands crash-involved riders.



However, while age-group proportions have changed, the relative likelihood of crashing between the youngest and oldest age groups has not: Riders in the < 30 group are three times as likely to crash as those in the 50+ group. This aging into a lower risk group accounts for much of the 45% overall motorcycle crash rate drop discussed in previous posts. The crash risk of one-fourth of the motorcycling population decreased by two-thirds. Similarly, the drop in the 30-39 age group, which has a higher crash rate than the population average, has contributed as well.

But that's only part of the "remarkable decline" this thread attempts to explain. Look for more in upcoming posts.



Age groups used here were dictated by owner age data available to me. Age group percentages interpolated between published data points. Motorcycle owner age distribution is from Motorcycle Industry Council Statistical Annual 2003, Revzilla article Can rider-experience programs turn around the U.S. motorcycle industry?, and a document from the group Give a Shift, "Motorcycle Sales in the Slow Lane", which is apparently no longer available online.

US motorcycle registrations are available from NHTSA's Traffic Safety Facts Annual Report for 2016, Table 10.

Crash-involved rider age distribution derived from NHTSA's General Estimates System (1988-2015) and Crash Report Sampling System (2016).
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James R. Davis
Male Administrator
17328 Posts
[Mentor]


Houston, TX
USA

Honda

GoldWing 1500

Posted - 08/09/2018 :  10:45 AM Follow poster on Twitter  Join poster on Facebook as Friend  
Your presentation and insights are remarkable in their clarity and completeness. Very, very impressed with your efforts. Thank you.
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DataDan
Advanced Member
567 Posts
[Mentor]


Central Coast, CA
USA

Yamaha

FJR1300

Posted - 08/13/2018 :  9:24 AM
The Need for Speed Recedes

Excessive speed can contribute to a motorcycle crash in so many ways. Going too fast for the rider to negotiate a curve or dip or crest or pothole. Too fast to react to traffic congestion or an obstacle in the road. Or so fast that the motorcycle effectively disappears: Unseen around a bend or over a hill when a motorist enters the rider's path of travel. Beyond a driver's "visual horizon" for judging potential interference from traffic moving at normal speed. Too fast for another driver to accurately estimate speed and project conflict. Too brief an appearance in a driver's mirrors before he changes lanes.

For as long as I can remember, excessive speed has been recognized as a cause of motorcycle crashes. We've been asked to slow down by rider educators. By non-motorcycle traffic safety advocates. By the moto media. By peers on the internet. By fellow riders. By our moms and dads, husbands and wives, boyfriends and girlfriends.

And it worked.

In 1997 NHTSA began assessing, for each vehicle in its statistical sample of crashes, driver culpability due to excessive speed. Back then, motorcyclist speed contributed to 24% of all motorcycle crashes. Now, twenty years later, it has fallen to 14%--from 13,000 out of 57,000 crashes to 15,000 out of 108,000. We have made significant progress in reducing this major cause of motorcycle crashes.

Through the same period, excessive speed by another driver contributed, on average, to 4% of multiple-vehicle motorcycle crashes. As seen in the "other driver" plot below, that is falling, too.

Those pleas to slow down have had an effect. We seem to be riding more sensibly in that respect, and it is seen in the crash data. Similar improvement in another problem area--drinking and riding--will be the subject of my next post.





In this analysis, the GES/CRSS variable SPEEDREL was used to determine whether rider or driver speed contributed to the crash. Both single- and multiple-vehicle crashes are included in the "motorcyclist" plot. Non-motorcycle drivers in multiple-vehicle motorcycle crashes comprise the "other driver" plot. In 2013, the SPEEDREL variable was expanded from yes/no to reflect specific conditions as well; all of the "yes" variations are included. For more, see the GES Analytical User's Manual (PDF).
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DataDan
Advanced Member
567 Posts
[Mentor]


Central Coast, CA
USA

Yamaha

FJR1300

Posted - 08/14/2018 :  9:06 AM
Drying Out

Drinking and riding, like speeding, has long been recognized as a main cause of motorcycle crashes. As with speeding, we have been urged for many years not to drink and ride.

And likewise, those lectures seem to have worked.

Since 1990, annual alcohol-related crashes have dropped by half. Riders who had been drinking dropped from more than 10% of those involved in crashes to 5%. In addition, alcohol involvement by drivers of other vehicles involved in motorcycle crashes is now less than 2%. This graph shows the decline in both motorcyclist and driver alcohol involvement:




Maybe even better news is that drinking and crashing seems to be headed down further. The graph below breaks out the motorcyclist plot in the previous graph by age group.

Note the three humps at 1990, 2000, and 2010. Dominant age groups are: in the first 25-34; in the second 35-44 and 45-54; and in the third 45-54 and 55+. What do these groups have in common? Their birth year is mid-1960s and earlier--it's the same group of riders seen over a 20-year span. Unlike that group, the 1970-1990 birth-year cohort--now age 50 and under--has been a relatively small contributor to the alcohol involvement problem. At present, these riders--the < 25, 25-34, and 35-44 age groups--are a declining segment of the drinking-and-riding-and-crashing group. An eyeball projection out 5 or 10 years suggests that the pre-1960 cohort will be nearly gone and the overall rate of alcohol involvement in motorcycle crashes will be down around 3%.



My conclusion (unsupported by professional qualification in the social sciences) is that drinking and riding has dried up due to social disfavor, particularly from motorcycling peer groups. We have absorbed from society at large a general disapproval of drinking and driving but spread it in a more focused way among ourselves. Further, while older age groups are less influenced by that social pressure, they are aging out of the sport, so we can look forward to a continuing decrease in alcohol as a cause of motorcycle crashes.

As with speeding, I see the reduction in alcohol involvement as an achievement we can take most of the credit for. Rider education, the moto media, internet forums such as this one, clubs, and informal groups are the major influences driving the trend.


In my next post I'll look at how the changing mix of vehicles we share the road with has affected the motorcycle crash rate. Though not a change intended to make the highway safer for us, it has had that benefit--but seems also to be a double-edged sword.


Alcohol involvement is determined from the GES/CRSS variable V_ALCH_IM in the vehicle dataset. All motorcyclists in crashes are included in the "motorcyclist drinking" plot. Non-motorcycle drivers in crashes with motorcycles are included in the "other driver drinking" plot. For more, see the GES Analytical User's Manual (PDF).

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DataDan
Advanced Member
567 Posts
[Mentor]


Central Coast, CA
USA

Yamaha

FJR1300

Posted - 08/17/2018 :  9:44 AM
Wrapping It Up

Contrary to what we hear from some in the safety establishment, riding a motorcycle is much safer now than it was 30 year ago--quite possibly, safer than it ever has been. Per mile ridden, or annually per registered motorcycle, we are about half as likely to crash as we were in 1988. This isn't just a snapshot assessment, but an evaluation of 30 years of data since nationwide crash estimates became available. And it comes in spite of (or perhaps because of) skyrocketing growth that has seen the number of motorcyclists in the US double. Part of this improvement is due to factors presented in this thread: We're drinking and riding less, we're speeding less, and we're more mature. But there's undoubtedly more to it--factors that can't be presented in a nifty graph.

Chief among those soft factors, as I see it, is the broadening appeal of motorcycling into lower risk groups. The aging rider is evidence of that. The older we get, the less appealing physical risk becomes. Participation of women is another. While I have no data on the growing number of women in motorcycling (10% is a number I have heard but can't cite a source for), it is probably more than their 8% crash involvement in recent years. Even the prime moto-demographic--young men--seems to be more risk-averse than their 1980s counterparts. Risk comes with motorcycling, without a doubt. But it also comes with those it attracts and the riding choices they make. And as the sport's appeal has grown, it has attracted participants with less risk tolerance than riders 30 years ago.


However, while average crash risk has declined, motorcycle collisions remain far deadlier than those in a car. I don't want to turn this into a lethality thread, but I think I've glossed over that very real issue. Regular readers of this forum fully grasp the potential for serious injury. But the internet is forever, and I want to make sure someone who happens upon this thread a year from now doesn't come away with an overly rosy picture of motorcycling risk.

The likelihood of death or serious injury in the event of a motorcycle crash is many times greater than in a car crash. Moreover, motorcycle crash lethality--the percentage of crashes that result in a fatality--is increasing. One factor behind that increase is the aging riding population--the very same factor that has contributed to declining crash risk. See my thread Vulnerability of older riders in motorcycle crashes.

Another factor driving lethality up is the growing proportion of light trucks in the fleet of vehicles we share the road with. A collision with a pickup, SUV, van, or minivan tends to injure a rider more severely than a collision with a typical sedan. Wendy Moon identified this disparity in her 2004 Motorcycle Consumer News article "Fatal Design". Today, light trucks make up about 50% of the passenger vehicle fleet compared to 25% in 1988.

I had expected that helmet law repeal in some states also contributed to increasing crash lethality. Instead, I found through this project that helmet use in crashes is higher now than it was 20 years ago. In spite of helmet law repeal in Texas, Arkansas, Kentucky, Florida, Pennsylvania, and Michigan, 67% of crash-involved riders were helmeted in 2016 compared to 62% in 1996, before those repeals.


In the original post of this thread, I said that the mix of other vehicles on the road may have contributed to declining crash risk, but that appears to be a dead end. Crashes with light trucks (pickups, SUVs, vans, minivans, crossovers) have increased less than their increase in vehicle-miles traveled, but I'm not satisfied with NHTSA estimates of VMT for those vehicles as a measure of relative exposure. I also hinted that the ways in which we crash may be changing. I have found small differences in road departures and left-turner crashes, but nothing big enough to suggest a significant contribution to the falling crash rate.

Motorcycling has always been more dangerous than driving a car, and it always will be. The inevitable risk is a price we are willing to pay for the pleasure riding brings us. I hope I have shown here that we have made significant progress in reducing that risk, due mainly to our own awareness of the problems and efforts to improve.

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dpete
Male Junior Member
42 Posts


Sachse, TX
USA

(None)

R1200RT (sold 2012)

Posted - 08/26/2018 :  12:51 PM
DataDan,

that's a significant work you have here that should be published in a journal for public consumption, siting proper sources.

I didn't have time to go through it all, but I do have one question (you may have answered it here already). You show lower crash rates for older riders, as in crash/reg for age groups. Is there any way you can put a distance unit in the denominator? I know lots of older riders actually may not ride much at all. Possibly many registrations are garage bikes and get out only once per month or so.

dp
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DataDan
Advanced Member
567 Posts
[Mentor]


Central Coast, CA
USA

Yamaha

FJR1300

Posted - 08/27/2018 :  10:23 AM
quote:
Originally posted by dpete

I didn't have time to go through it all, but I do have one question (you may have answered it here already). You show lower crash rates for older riders, as in crash/reg for age groups. Is there any way you can put a distance unit in the denominator? I know lots of older riders actually may not ride much at all. Possibly many registrations are garage bikes and get out only once per month or so.


We must hang with different kinds of geezer riders.

My kind has been known to ride 200 miles for breakfast because no one serves biscuits and gravy like Flo's Airport Cafe in Chino.

The data I presented on motorcycle owner age vs. crash-involved rider age agrees with data on licensed driver age vs. crash involved driver age. Drivers < 35 are twice as likely as drivers 45-64 to be involved in a crash over a year.

AFAIK, there are no estimates of VMT by age group. Motorcycle VMT estimates are difficult in any case. Surveyors park with a good vantage point and count the different vehicles that pass, and those proportions are then applied to total VMT estimates. It gets more difficult where riding is highly seasonal because annual proportions must be estimated from several samples.

What would be required is an ongoing survey with, say, 1000 randomly selected subjects contacted regularly about their riding. Perhaps Motorcycle Industry Council does that now. They didn't the last time I bought their Statistical Annual--in 2004 when it was $25. They now charge several hundred.
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rkfire
Advanced Member
1713 Posts


Stratford, CT
USA

Suzuki

Bandit

Posted - 08/31/2018 :  8:58 AM   Join poster on Facebook as Friend  
quote:

We must hang with different kinds of geezer riders.




Ha, my experience as well. I'm the youngin at 65, in my group of motorcycle pals.

Know a couple of 80 year olds ride daily, everywhere, including the cold months in CT. My 11 year older brother and I take a nice long ride more or less once a week together. He says to me, we're both retired, lets ride on the weekdays when the kids are in school, the parents at work, and the roads are clear.

The retirees that I know that ride, have a lot of time to ride. Some seem to have an attitude of, get it in now, before no longer able.

Where most of the younger bunch I know, well, they have work, growing families, obligations, which often interfere with riding.

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DataDan
Advanced Member
567 Posts
[Mentor]


Central Coast, CA
USA

Yamaha

FJR1300

Posted - 11/30/2018 :  8:11 PM
In my post "Wrapping It Up" I suggested that the growing number of women riders could be a factor in reducing the crash rate:
quote:
Chief among those soft factors as I see it, is the broadening appeal of motorcycling into lower risk groups. The aging rider is evidence of that. The older we get, the less appealing physical risk becomes. Participation of women is another. While I have no data on the growing number of women in motorcycling (10% is a number I have heard but can't cite a source for), it is probably more than their 8% crash involvement in recent years.


This week, the Motorcycle Industry Council reported that women are now 19% of bike owners:


Motorcycle Industry Council Survey Reveals Continuing Shift in Rider Demographics

Nearly one in five motorcycle owners is now female, compared with one in 10 less than a decade ago, and the data suggests that women could soon make up one quarter of owners, which would be a major shift in motorcycling demographics, according to the latest national survey by the Motorcycle Industry Council.

Among all age groups, women now make up 19 percent of motorcycle owners. But the 2018 survey showed even greater female ownership within younger generations. Among Gen X motorcycle owners, 22 percent were women; among Gen Y, 26 percent were women.

"As the number of Boomer and mature motorcyclists shrink and are replaced by newer riders, we could soon be looking at a solid 25 percent of motorcycle owners being female," said Andria Yu, MIC director of communications. "We've seen with our own eyes many more women riders ? on the roads, on the trails, on the track, with families, at motorcycling events, forming clubs and just being part of everyday group rides. Many people in the industry have worked some 30 years to achieve this, and now the data confirms it: More and more women are getting out there and enjoying motorcycles."



A graphic that came with the news release shows that their surveys have found a steady increase from 10% in 2009 to 12% in 2012 and 14% in 2014.

From the NHTSA sample of motorcycle crashes used in this thread, women riders have been involved in 8.5% of crashes 2014-2016, substantially lower than their representation among owners. This data, then, does show that women are contribuing to the remarkable reduction in crash rate.
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