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Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents in Rochester

Blind Spots

Motorcycles are often an afterthought for cars, seeing as they are much smaller than most vehicles. Because of their size, motorcycles are often riding in the blind spots of other cars on the road. All it takes is one driver not checking their blind spot before turning or switching lanes to hit a motorcyclist. It is in the interest of both parties to be aware of their surroundings and to check their blind spots but this is especially important at night. A good tip for motorcyclists is to try to stay out of the blind spot as much as possible and make yourself seen.  

Drivers Making Left-Hand Turns

Similarly to blind spots, another common collision between cars and motorcycles occurs when a driver is making a left turn. Cars often forget about other obstacles on the road, including pedestrians, bikes, and motorcycles. It is important for motorcyclists to pay attention to cars turning to make sure they don’t collide. This includes keeping a good distance from cars in front of you and paying close attention to blinkers. 

Driving Between Lanes (Lane Splitting)

Lane splitting is dangerous and illegal in NYS. No one enjoys waiting in traffic or being behind a slow driver but it is not worth the potential damage caused by driving in between lanes. This not only puts the motorcyclist in danger but everyone else. Other vehicles aren’t expecting a motorcycle to drive so close to them and it may take them by surprise in addition to making it harder for them to maneuver around them. This also makes it more likely for a motorcycle to get hit by a car changing lanes. 


Speeding puts everyone on the road in danger but especially motorcycles. Motorcycles don’t have anything to protect them in accidents like cars do. They are also more prone to sliding when turning too fast, causing accidents and physical harm to the driver. 

Open Door Collisions 

When driving on side streets or in parking lots, it is important to be aware of your surroundings and look out for people getting out of their vehicles. A motorcycle can easily run into an open car door if they aren’t paying close attention. People getting out of their vehicles also need to look around and make sure it is safe to do so before exiting. 

Icy Roads and Inclement Weather (Rain, Sleet, Snow, etc.)

In Rochester, the weather can change quickly. What started off as a beautiful day can turn into a hazardous one. When the weather is bad and the roads are slick from ice, rain, or snow, drivers need to proceed with an abundance of caution. This is especially true in Rochester where the weather is often unpredictable. Cars have the benefit of balance since they have four wheels to keep their vehicle upright. Motorcycles, however, don't balance on their own and are more prone to sliding or falling over if they slip on a slick road. Additionally, keeping proper distance between you and another vehicle gives you more time to slow down if an accident occurs in front of you. This is especially important on slippery roads. 

While these are all common causes of accidents, negligent behavior like driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs or not signaling before making a turn has life-threatening consequences for both parties involved. Whether you are driving a car or a motorcycle, please be conscious of your driving and remember to share the road.