The number of older motorcycle riders is increasing the motorcycle fatality and injury rates, according to a recently released study reported in ScienceDaily.com. Researchers studied the records of over 60,000 motorcyclists involved in crashes between 1996 and 2005.
The researchers found that between 1996 and 2005, the average age of motorcyclists involved in crashes increased from 34 to 39. In addition, the proportion of injured motorcyclists over age 40 increased from 28 percent to 50 percent. Out of all injured motorcyclists that were studied, those between ages 50 and 59 were the fastest growing group, and 20 to 29 year old riders were the most declining.
Besides being more likely to be injured in a motorcycle accident, older riders who crash are more likely to have serious injuries, a longer hospital stay, or die when compared to younger riders. Motorcyclists over 40 are between one and a half and two times more likely to die in crashes than riders under age 40. The difference could be attributed to the body’s decreased ability to withstand injury as a person ages.