Despite less traffic on the road in 2020 and a 2% reduction in motorcycle crashes, there was a 17% increase in Texas motorcycle fatalities compared to 2019, state transportation officials say. The Texas Department of Transportation reported that in the 7,481 motorcycle crashes in Texas last year, 1,856 motorcyclists were seriously injured and 482 were killed.
Motorcyclists account for 12% of all traffic fatalities statewide, TxDOT said. The Texas Transportation Institute (TTI) reports that fatal crashes between motorcyclists and drivers often occur when drivers misjudge the motorcycle’s distance and speed and make left turns in front of an oncoming motorcyclist. Last year, almost 1/3 of Texas motorcycle fatalities occurred in an intersection or were intersection-related. TTI also points to driver inattention as a contributing factor to motorcycle crashes.
May is National Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, and the Texas Department of Transportation’s annual “Share the Road: Look Twice for Motorcycles” campaign gets underway to call attention to the safety precautions motorists can take to protect motorcyclists and themselves.