Understanding where is the most common place for motorcycle accidents in Arizona, the degree of severe bodily harm motorcyclists can sustain in a crash, and other statistics can help you avoid or navigate your own motorcycle accident. Beyond understanding motorcycle accidents better, it is often wise to find a Phoenix motorcycle accident lawyer who will advocate for your rights and represent you in court.

Motorcycles have consistently grown in popularity within recent years, and it’s especially unsurprising to see this trend in warmer climate locations, such as Arizona. This mode of transportation isn’t without its risks, however, just as is the case with every other motor vehicle – if not more so.

Statistics Regarding Where Most Motorcycle Accidents Happen in Arizona

The Arizona Department of Transportation released a 2021 report regarding motorcycle crashes that found there were 2,594 total accidents, resulting in 2,206 injuries and 160 fatalities. 77 percent of these collisions occurred in urban areas rather than in rural areas, of which there were 584 rural crashes that still contributed to more than a fourth of the state’s fatal motorcycle accidents.

The study further found that the majority of motorcycle incidents occurred in Maricopa County, followed by Pima County, with a significant margin between the two. The two counties combined accounted for 70 percent of all motorcycle fatalities. After another large margin, the next counties where motorcycle accidents occurred most frequently were Pinal, Mohave, and Yavapai counties.

How Is Fault Determined in a Motorcycle Collision in AZ?

Most people might assume motorcyclists are to blame in an accident, perhaps from the stigma that riders are “reckless,” but in fact, 42 percent of collisions with another vehicle resulted from drivers not noticing the motorcycle during a left turn, as the motorcyclist was approaching from the opposite direction.

When a rider seeks compensation in a personal injury claim, the degree to which each party is at fault must be determined in court; being “at fault” refers to how responsible someone is for the accident and, thus, how liable they are to pay for the opposing party’s damages.

In Arizona, personal injury law allows victims to recover damages even when partially at fault, up to the percentage remaining after subtracting the degree of liability. For example, if the injured person is found to be 30 percent responsible for the accident, they can still pursue up to 70 percent of the damages and losses suffered. The degrees of fault are determined by the court after each side’s legal representation argues their case and presents relevant supporting evidence.

Potential Injuries Often Suffered by Motorcyclists in Traffic Crashes

Motorcyclists are especially susceptible to injury in traffic accidents and even more so if the driver fails to wear a helmet. The force of impact from the collision, whether with another motorist or a stationary object, poses the likelihood of severe harm to the motorcyclist. Injury often happens following their body sustaining the force created by the crash, when they are crushed after their bike falls over, or when they are propelled from the motorcycle.

  • Leg and other lower-extremity injuries. Recent studies suggest physical damage to the lower extremities to be the most common injuries among motorcyclists after an accident.
  • Fractured bones. In addition to leg injuries, commonly broken bones are frequently at the ankles, wrists, arms, and ribs.
  • Road rash. Severe abrasions along the skin can occur from the motorist making contact with the pavement at high speed and/or impact. This may lead to serious skin loss, which is susceptible to scarring or infection.
  • Traumatic brain injuries. Injuries to the brain are the most common cause of motorcycle fatalities each year and can happen even with a helmet on. A study from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that simply wearing a helmet is 40% effective in preventing motorcycle fatalities for motorcyclists and that many deaths could be prevented with helmet usage.

Other bodily injuries include spinal cord damage, internal injuries, partial or total paralysis, amputations, and in extreme cases, death.


Q: Where Is the Most Likely Place for a Motorcycle Accident?

A: National data suggests the most likely place for a motorcycle accident to happen is in urban areas, which account for approximately 67 percent of motorcycle-related deaths. This is likely because of higher rates of traffic combined with more condensed streets compared to the less populous and wider open spaces in rural areas.

Additionally, 65 percent of motorcycle crashes occur on non-intersection roadways, and only 8 percent of accidents happen on interstate roads.

Q: What Is the Motorcycle Death Rate in Arizona?

A: In Arizona, the annual motorcycle death rate is approximately 161 fatalities on average. There was a slight decline (0.62 percent) in the frequency of motorcycle-related deaths between 2020 and 2021, compared to the national rate of motorcycle fatalities, which saw a 7.73 percent increase between 2020 and 2021. From 2021 to 2022, there was a 4.8 percent increase in the rate of deaths resulting from motorcycle accidents across the country.

Q: Where Do the Majority of Motorcycle Accidents Occur?

A: In the state of Arizona, the majority of motorcycle accidents occur in urban areas, where there are higher populations. Additionally, the counties where one study found the most motorcycle crashes in Arizona were Maricopa and Pima counties.

National data from 2020 and 2021 reported that the states with the highest rates of motorcycle deaths relative to the number of motorcycles on the road occurred in Texas, Arkansas, and Missouri. In 2021, the country also recorded nearly 6,000 motorcycle-related deaths, which is higher than any other year.

Q: At What Speed Do Most Motorcycle Deaths Occur?

A: A NHTSA study surprisingly found the average (median) speed of impact at 21.5 mph and that the median speed pre-collision was just under 30 mph, meaning motorcycle accidents don’t always occur at high speeds and, in fact, rarely do. 33 percent of national motorcycle fatalities in 2021 were speeding-related, however, meaning the driver was charged with a related offense or was indicated as racing, driving too fast for conditions, or exceeding the limit.

Connect with a Qualified Personal Injury Attorney

If you or someone you love has been involved in a motorcycle accident, it is important to find an experienced personal injury attorney. At Luis P. Guerra, L.L.C., our legal team of professional injury lawyers is experienced in helping clients who were harmed in motorcycle traffic crashes and earning them full financial compensation for the damages they suffered. Schedule a consultation with us today.