Texas, and Houston in particular, sees many motorcycle accidents. It might appear fun when you see someone zooming down the highway on a Harley, but it’s not the smartest idea. You may want to own a motorcycle and ride it frequently if you’re a thrill-seeker, but you should know about the accident rates related to this particular vehicle variety.
Let’s get into a little more detail about why some Houston residents seem to love motorcycle ownership so much. We’ll also talk about whether continuing to own a motorcycle and ride it is worth it.
The Texas Motorcycle Accident Death Rate
There are some sobering stats if you look at Houston and Texas motorcycle accident and death rates. Even though there are many more cars and trucks on the road versus motorcycles, motorcycle wrecks cause more than 10% of vehicle deaths. That is far out of proportion versus other vehicles.
The main reason for this is that motorcycles don’t provide the protection that cars and trucks do. These other vehicles have a nice, safe steel frame that protects the driver and passengers. While injuries and deaths are certainly possible if you drive a car or ride in one, you have a much better survival chance if another vehicle hits you.
That’s not the case with motorcycles. Your body is right out there in the open, and even a little nudge from another vehicle can prove deadly. If a car or truck makes a little contact while you’re on a motorcycle, you can go flying into a ditch, collide with a highway divider, etc.
Houston is also a particularly dangerous area for motorcycle riders because of the massive highways that run through and around it. While it’s perfectly legal for you to ride your motorcycle on them, that does not mean that it’s a bright idea to do so.
Houston has highway I-69, I-45, and I-610. They see a lot of use throughout the day, especially during rush hour in the morning and early evening.
When the pandemic began, there were fewer cars on the road because many individuals couldn’t get to work anymore. Their workplaces closed down, some of them permanently. Now the lockdowns are long over, and the result is that Houston’s highways are more clogged during rush hour than ever.
If you own a motorcycle and commute to work, you put yourself in danger every time you get onto one of these highways. Even if you don’t speed and follow all traffic rules, that does not mean that the vehicles around you will act the same way.
Is It Time to Get a Different Vehicle?
One issue that some motorcycle riders run into is that they may have owned their vehicle for years, and they might feel a deep sense of attachment to it. Most people don’t define themselves according to the car or truck they drive, but the average motorcycle rider might bring up the fact that they ride within just a few minutes of meeting you.
If you’re in this category, and you feel like owning and riding your motorcycle is a huge part of your identity, it might not be easy to get rid of it. You likely know all about the Houston and Texas motorcycle crash stats, but you may brush them off, thinking that nothing like that will ever happen to you.
Maybe you’re right, and you could continue riding for years and never become a statistic. The thing is, though, the odds are against you for the reasons we already mentioned.
It’s true you can do things like wear a helmet every time you ride to protect yourself somewhat, but the inherent danger element is always there. You might not feel so bad about it if you’re single, but if you have a family, you may reconsider your desire to be a motorcycle rider till the end of your days.
If you have got a spouse or significant other who doesn’t like you riding, you might decide to give it up eventually for their sake. It could also be that you’re a mother or father, and you give up riding because you do not want your kids growing up without a parent. It’s a matter of being an adult and living more responsibly than when you were younger.
Ultimately, it’s your decision whether you continue to ride your motorcycle in the Houston area, but these troubling stats are hard to ignore.