The number of deaths related to motorcycle accidents has been dramatically increasing in the last decade.

In fact, there were 5,290 fatal motorcycle accidents in 2008 alone; that is more than double the number of deaths related to motorcycle crashes in 1998, which are 2,483.

Although fatal car accidents are still significantly higher at more than 30,000 deaths, the trend is decreasing while motorcycle deaths are increasing.

One of the most prevalent causes of fatal motorcycle accidents is driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI).

In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) about 46 percent of all fatal motorcycle accidents involve alcohol.

That is almost half of all deaths related to motorcycle crashes.

But how exactly does alcohol cause these many motorcycle related deaths?

Well, the Motorcycle Safety Foundation made a small study that shows the incompatibility of alcohol and motorcycles.

Here is what the study found out at different BAC levels:

0.01 to .04 % BAC

According to the study, even at this low blood alcohol content, there would already be effects on the motorcyclist's driving.

The effects include:

  • Motorcyclist's road judgment is reduced

  • Motorcyclist becomes less critical of their actions

  • Motorcyclist's reaction time is reduced

  • Signs of mental relaxation manifests

At this BAC level the risk of being involved in a motorcycle accident increases five times.

0.05 to 0.07% BAC

According to the study, at this level of BAC the motorcyclist will experience the following effects:

  • Motorcyclist's road judgment is no longer sound

  • Motorcyclist's reasoning and thinking ability is no longer clear

  • Ability to perform complex skills is reduced

At this BAC level, the risk of motorcycle accidents increases forty-fold.

0.08 % BAC or Higher

This is the DUI legal limit in California so if you have a BAC of .08% or higher, you can be arrested for suspicion of DUI.

According to the study, the effects of alcohol at this BAC level are:

  • Motorcylist's road judgment and reasoning ability is severely reduced

  • Motorcylist's commits errors in performing even the simplest tasks

At this rate, these motorcyclists are just accidents waiting to happen.


The only way to actually prevent this is to not drink and drive.

If you have had even just one bottle of alcohol, wait to sober up; spend the night if you have to or just call a cab, but do not drive drunk in any circumstances.

If you do, you are not only putting your life on the line, but of others as well.