The Hidden Costs Behind Economical Self-Transportation: Washington, D.C. Motorcyclists Get More than They Bargained for, and it’s Not All Good

With gas prices climbing, the economy slipping, and traffic somehow getting even worse in the Washington, D.C. area (and throughout the country), it is no surprise that more and more people are forgoing their gas-greedy cars and trucks for more economical and fuel-savvy motorcycles. This move, though, has proven to be an expensive one for insurance companies.

The GAO, or Government Accountability Office, recently released the GAO Motorcycle Safety Report, which uses information compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) from 2010. This report contains information on how much motorcycle crashes cost annually, which is approximately $16 billion.

The surprising statistics paint a grim picture for motorcyclists—15% of traffic fatalities in the United States involve motorcyclists, though motorcycles only make up about 3% of U.S. registered vehicles. And while motorcyclists are over 30 times more likely than a driver of a car to be killed in a crash, it is not the fatal accidents that account for the majority of the $16 billion quoted figure.

Approximately 75% of that cost is attributed to medical and insurance payments, and with long-term physical therapy and rehabilitation extending beyond a single year, the numbers could be much higher than the study named. A significant part of these insurance payouts cover things like lost potential earnings and household productivity.

If you have been injured in a Washington, D.C. area motorcycle accident, you know that you have significant financial and medical obstacles to overcome. Do not trust your future in the hands of inexperienced attorneys. The Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia motorcycle accident lawyers at Lewis & Tompkins are here to help you get the compensation you need to begin your road to recovery following an accident—call today at 202.296.0666.