Are motorcycles all that dangerous?

I'm going to start riding a motorcycle (a 700cc Yamaha virago) and my girlfriend is freaking out saying that I'm going to die or get really messed up in some way. So are they really all that dangerous?

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  • Dimo J
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Motorcycles have a high accident/injury rate because of the idiots that choose to ride them. If you want to go fast you can get a 4-cyl 600cc race bike that will do 170mph for about $6K or a high performance sports car for about $60K.

    A motorcycle is a smaller target, quicker, more agile, and for any particular person they are less likely to be involved in a collision, less likely to be injured, and less likely to die on a motorcycle than in a car.

  • 1 decade ago

    Traffic is all dangerous. On a motorcycle you have vulnerability, but you also have agility. That means, you can drive your way out of harm's way most times.

    I started riding motorcycles in late 1969. I rode the last time in 1993, but because the bike was worn out, not me. I had a few close calls. Mostly, I had fun. My father told me, " Stay scared of it, because the day you aren't you will fall.". I fell. I got up and rode away. After awhile I got a helmet and then came the helmet law- the price of helmets went up a lot right along with the law coming in. I liked gloves. I didn't like helmets, but wore it to stay this side of the law.

    Motorcycles aren't any more dangerous than the traffic and the road it travels. Notice how many motorcycles you see everywhere, not falling down- how many riders you see enjoying life. You'll have more to pay attention to. Take the safety course.

    When I got my first bike, my mother had fits and my sisters all looked at me like a dead man. My brothers cheered me on, but wouldn't follow me. Now, I'm an old man, and I'm glad I had my motorcycles. Don't get me wrong. I'm not saying everybody must ride a motorcycle. If you really want one, learn to ride and respect it, you'll be telling somebody things like I told you 30 years from now. It'll be a trip. I'll be laughing on my cloud with my harp (Hohner Blues harp) and my long robe (denim) and my DOT3 approved halo.

  • 1 decade ago

    The big problem with the motorcycle world is...idiots. unfortunately, idiots are the fastest segment of the human population. By idiot I mean: people who decide to ride a bike, get a ZX-10R or a Hayabusa, don't bother to take a training course or get a license, and go 150mph in a 55 zone their first day. It's those people who are most likely to get killed or really screwed up...not those of us who do it right: get a properly sized beginner bike, get all the safety gear, take a training course, then start riding at our skill level, not just to impress our friends with the new bike. I feel that done properly, riding a motorcycle can be a very rewarding hobby...but not the safest. It isnt unsafe, but there are much safer things you could be doing...sitting at home? There is always that risk of things that you cant control, and you have to accept that. As for me, i'm gonna keep riding safely so that I may live to ride for the rest of my life...because that is what i'm on this earth for. To ride!

    Source(s): Biker for life.
  • 1 decade ago

    Firecracker had a fantastic answer. It's like saying guns are dangerous. When used incorrectly and abused, yes, they are amazingly dangerous. When OPERATED and used in a safe and appropriate for real world road conditions, they are just another "point A to point B" vehicle.

    I hate people that freak out about motorcycles. They are placing the stereotype of everyone who rides poorly onto the ones who ride with responsibility. In my opinion, I'd rather be on a motorcycle than in a car, because if something happens, then I have the power, swiftness and agility to get out of the incident. Also, if you're riding properly, you should have given yourself enough outs should a situation arise.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Motorcycles are inherently harder to control and less forgiving than a car. They also have less grip, but usually a higher power/weight ratio than most cars.

    The rider is also more vulnerable in the sense that they are harder to see and less well protected than a car driver in the event of a collision.

    This means that your 'average' motorcyclist is a much more skilled and safer rider/driver than your 'average' car driver as they are forced to concentrate on their surroundings much more.

    50% of motorcyclist fatalities occur due to collision with another vehicle at a junction - most commonly when a car pulls out in front of the motorcyclist after failing to see or yield to it. Another 25% are caused by collision with another vehicle when not at junctions - another common scenario being a car driver entering a motorcyclists lane without noticing the motorcycle. Only 25% are caused due to the motorcyclist losing control of the vehicle - there are no figures for how many of those were behaving like suicidal idiots at the time they lost control, but it's probably a fair amount.

    As someone else said, the motorcycle, like any vehicle, will only react to the operators input - it itself is not inherently dangerous. As long as you are competent at controlling your motorcycle, planning ahead, reading road conditions and anticipating the (often reckless) actions of other motorists then you may very well be less likely to be involved in an accident than you would be in a car when you may not be concentrating as much on these things.

    At the end of they, as with anything in life, you have to weigh up the risks with the rewards and make the best judgment you can.

    Source(s): Figures are from a recent UK study and may not be applicable to other nations.
  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Yeah, they are pretty dangerous. Not only are you unprotected from impacts like you would be in a car, but you dont have any of the safety features like seatbelts, airbags, antilock brakes, etc. Additionally, if you turn too hard you can drop your bike, and you are smaller so other drivers don't see you as well, causing them to pull out in front of you or stop too short or just generally make things more dangerous to you. Ice, rain, wind, all are factors that are more dangerous for motorcyclists.

    That being said, I continue to ride my 3 bikes and I encourage my friends and family to do the same. Riding a bike has made me a much better driver, and a rider, to the point that I can compensate for some of the dangers through strict attention. However, anyone who rides and does not acknowledge that it is dangerous won't be riding anything more than a wheelchair for very long.

    Invest in some quality gear like a good helmet, a kevlar or leather jacket, some extra bright headlights, sturdy boots and gloves, and take your local motorcycle safety course if you haven't already. Thats a really good start to keeping yourself safe on a bike.

    Good luck

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    No. Motorcycles are not that dangerous, but twinkies who text or talk on the phone while driving can kill you.

    Most bike wrecks are caused by cars that turn left in front of motorcycles or otherwise fail to yield the right-of-way.

    That's followed by riders who enter a curve at too high a rate of speed, followed by riders who are DUI.

    Take the MSF class, keep your skills sharp and ride like you are invisible.

  • 1 decade ago

    Just as dangerous as a rock.

    Does nothing it's not told to do.

    Superior acceleration and braking to many 4 wheelers.

    Girls often have a negative reaction to things they don't understand.

    My first wife was against it when I started riding - then she got caught trying to start the 'cycle herself.

    20 years later, I've got no broken bones or road rash.

    One crash due to a woman driving through a stop sign.

    She would have caused a crash no matter what I was driving.

    It was her luck I was on a 'cycle instead of in my truck.

  • justme
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Yes, to a degree. There is an inherent degree of danger involved with riding motorcycles that we bikers are perfectly willing to accept. We do not ride because we feel safer on a bike than inside our cars.

  • 1 decade ago

    IMO motorcycles are safe IF there's no cars on the road

    the most dangerous part about riding is those stupid *** girls that don't know how to drive, and don't even use their turn signals.

    Source(s): almost hit 3 times all times where a girl who didn't signal
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