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When it comes to road accidents, none are as devastating as motorcycle accidents.

Since motorcycles don’t offer any protection from impacts, most riders end up sustaining injuries.

However, these injuries may range anywhere from minor scrapes and bruises to permanent, life-altering disabilities. 

So, what are the most common motorcycle accident injuries, and how often do they occur?

Here’s an overview of the types of injuries that happen the most and their impact on most victims.

In this article, the motorcycle lawyers at River Run Law will go over the ins and outs of common motorcycle accident injuries. 

If you have questions, please contact us today. 

Types of Motorcycle Accident Injuries

As mentioned before, motorcycle accidents usually result in serious injuries.

The main reason for this is that the rider usually gets ejected on impact, colliding with the road, another vehicle, or stationary objects.

As a result, motorcyclists and their passengers often sustain the following injuries.

Road Rash

Perhaps the most common injury in motorcyclist accidents is road rash. This happens when the rider skids across the pavement, tearing large amounts of tissue.

Although leather or abrasion-rated clothing helps prevent or minimize road rash, it still has a chance of occurring. 

While road rash on its own isn’t particularly dangerous, there are a few ways it can become serious.

For example, due to the size of the abrasions, it’s not uncommon for some riders to develop infections due to their injury.

In addition, the location and healing of a road rash injury may increase the chance of permanent scarring. 


If a motorcyclist ends up colliding with another vehicle, fractures are bound to happen. Depending on the kind of fracture a victim has, the recovery process can be incredibly painful.

This is particularly true if you sustain broken ribs, which may cause injury to surrounding organs. However, fractures are just as likely to happen to the arms and legs.

For example, foot injuries from a motorcycle accident typically include fractures to small bones that occur when landing on the pavement or getting pinned to another object. 

Traumatic Brain Injuries

The most deadly injury a motorcyclist can experience is a traumatic brain injury or TBI.

This is why so many organizations encourage riders to wear helmets whenever they go out on the road.

In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that helmets reduce the risk of a head injury by 69%.

This includes different types of TBI such as: 

  • Concussions,
  • Contusions,
  • Skull fractures,
  • Hemorrhages,
  • Hematomas,
  • Penetrating injury,
  • Diffuse axonal injury, and
  • Second impact syndrome.

Treating motorcycle accident head injuries is a long process, and some victims never recover certain cognitive functions.

While some brain injuries may require high-risk surgery, others involve speech therapy or other forms of cognitive training.

Spinal Cord Injuries

Although spinal cord injuries aren’t as common as other injury types, they are some of the most traumatic.

According to the Mayo Clinic, motorcycle accidents and other road incidents account for nearly half of the reported spinal cord injuries in the United States annually.

Depending on the severity and location of the injury, it may lead to several life-altering conditions, including:

  • Chronic back and neck pain,
  • Weakness in the extremities,
  • Lack of coordination,
  • Loss of bladder or bowel control,
  • Difficulty breathing regularly,
  • Loss of sexual function or fertility,
  • Paraplegia, and
  • Quadriplegia. 

Since many of these motorcycle accident injuries require lifelong treatment, it’s important to seek the help of an attorney if you sustain any of them.

The costs of these conditions go far beyond financial losses. They also reduce the quality of life and take away the ability to move in many instances.

The Importance of Safety Equipment and Helmets

Before you go for a ride, it’s important to remember safety. While things like riding leathers, pads, and helmets may seem like overkill, they are really effective at keeping you safe in the event of an accident.

A long-term year study by the National Safety Council found that between 2002 and 2017, helmets saved the lives of more than 25,000 motorcycle riders.

In addition, the CDC reported that 749 people could’ve been saved if they’d worn a helmet in the last year of that study. 

So, what are some steps you can take to prevent motorcycle accident injuries? Before every ride, make sure you:

  • Check your headlights, signals, brakes, and tire pressure;
  • Balance any cargo you have a secure it firmly to the vehicle;
  • Wear leather or abrasion-resistant clothing; and
  • Put on a DOT-approved helmet.

While this doesn’t protect you in every scenario, it certainly helps increase your chances of surviving a crash with few injuries. 

Injured by a Negligent Driver While Riding? Our Virginia Personal Injury Attorneys Are Here for You

At River Run Law, we understand that motorcycle accident injuries lead to significant complications for many victims.

If you received any injuries due to a negligent driver while riding your motorcycle, you shouldn’t have to fight for your recovery alone.

With a track record of success and recognition from the National Trial Lawyers, our motorcycle accident lawyers know what it takes to advocate for victims.

To schedule a free consultation with a Richmond motorcycle accident attorney, call us at 804-889-0500 or contact us online. 

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Casey Ariail

Casey is a founding partner at River Run Law Group. Casey has tried numerous cases across the Commonwealth in both General District Court and Circuit Court. He has earned millions of dollars for his clients through trials, mediations, and settlements.

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