Which body parts get injured most in motorcycle wrecks?

ATGATT is a term with which motorcycle enthusiasts should be familiar, as it’s an acronym for “All The Gear, All The Time.” Proponents of safer riding encourage motorcycle riders and their passengers to gear up each time they head out on their two- wheelers.

In South Florida, heavy motorcycle gear can be both hot and uncomfortable. But failing to gear up can turn a bad day into your last day. Read on to learn which body parts are most vulnerable in a collision.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Association For The Advancement Of Automotive Medicine and the World Health Organization all weighed in on the findings.

According to the CDC, after researching 1,222,000 Emergency Room patients people treated for non-fatal, injuries from accidents in motorcycle wrecks in the seven years between 2001 and 2008, 30 percent of non-lethal injuries occur to the feet and legs of riders.

The CDC reports that 22 percent of injuries were to the neck and head, illustrating again the importance of always riding with a helmet.

Data also showed that the upper trunk area that includes the back, shoulders and chest was also vulnerable, followed by the pelvis and hips.

Research by the AAAM included tracking of injuries by helmet usage. It studied all injured motorcycle riders in Maryland from 1998-2002, using police reports and hospital discharge records. Its report breaks the injury locations into nine regions:

  • Head
  • Chest
  • Abdomen
  • Spine
  • Neck
  • Face
  • Upper extremites
  • Lower extremities
  • External skin

As expected, those wearing helmets in a state where it’s required by law had fewer severe injuries.

Younger riders tended to have higher incidences of severe injuries to the face, head and neck when they weren’t in helmets, but for older unhelmeted riders, the lower body parts again took more abuse in a crash.

What this all means is that protective gear should be worn all over the body, not just the head. Leathers and specially-designed, padded motorcycle gear can lessen the impact on the body when colliding with a vehicle or object.

Those recovering from motorcycle crashes may wish to pursue damage claims from at-fault drivers. Make sure to include the cost of replacing your gear in your claim.

Source: RideApart, “What body parts will you most likely injure in a motorcycle crash?,” Wes Siler, accessed Jan. 06, 2016