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Research offers new data about women and motorcycle accidents

These blogs are posted on behalf of Hof & Reid LLC, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the firm or its attorneys. The information presented in this blog is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice.

Pennsylvania is a state rich in history, and when it comes to motorcycle culture, more than a century of continued growth has made the Keystone State a place where bikers both honor their heritage and become ambassadors for future generations of motorcyclists. Gone are the days when not many women were into riding, and manufacturers have developed new products that appeal to a wider customer base. Motorcycle culture has become a shining example of gender equality, but bikers may be shocked to learn that when it comes to data regarding motorcycle accidents, women have been left behind. 

Though motorcycle manufacturers and the experts that study vehicle safety work hard to ensure that new products and driving laws are designed to protect riders, the tests used to provide crash data are outdated. The human figures used during accident simulations, commonly referred to as crash test dummies, have not been updated for nearly 50 years. These dummies are meant to provide a picture of how the average human body is affected by a crash, but when they were designed in the early 1970s, the dummy used to represent the average female apparently only accurately depicts a mere 5% of women -- according to a 2019 study by a leading university. 

To compound the discrepancy, many vehicle crash tests use only male dummies. This oversight has resulted in skewed results for crash tests. Reportedly, in real life crashes women are about 70% more likely to suffer serious injury. This important revelation applies to vehicle crashes in general, but motorcycle accidents result in serious injury or death at a much higher rate than persons in a passenger car, truck or SUV. 

The threat of being injured in motorcycle accidents is very real. When a person suffers injury in a Pennsylvania crash, help is available. An attorney can help to assess the circumstances, identify culpable parties and pursue claims for damages through the state's civil justice system. 

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