Arizona is home to many snowbirds and retirees who want to live out their golden years with mild winters. Because so little rain falls in our region, motorcycles are quite popular. With more baby boomers riding motorcycles these days, accidents involving older riders are unfortunately becoming more common.
A recent wsj.com article highlighted this trend, and credited it to a number of factors. First, the slowing reflexes and reaction times that older riders may have can contribute to the increasing number of accidents. One of the riders injured in a crash specifically noted that his reflexes may have been quicker in his younger years.
Also, many motorcycles do not have anti-lock braking systems, which ostensibly would prevent some accidents from occurring. Further, a number of new riders have not taken motorcycle safety classes, which could play a part in limiting accidents and injuries. Only a handful of states require new riders to take such classes before getting a license.
Nevertheless, the injured riders highlighted in the wsj.com article were wearing helmets and proper clothing for riding but were injured by apparently inattentive drivers. One driver was rear-ended, and another was broadsided. Because of this, it is likely that these injured riders will bring personal injury lawsuits against the offending drivers.
In the meantime, the story should be a reminder that riders should be aware of their surroundings. Even though they may have a right to seek compensation from a driver liable for an accident, it is always better to avoid a crash altogether.