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Accid. Anal. and Prev., Vol. 27, No. 6, pp.

845-851, 1995
Copyright 0 1995 Elsevier Science Ltd
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved
cool-4575/95 $9.50 + 0.00

Pergamon
OOOl-4575(95)00027-5

ANALYSIS OF FATAL MOTORCYCLE


CRASH TYPING
DAVID

F. PREUSSER,

ALLAN

F. WILLIAMS~*

and

PRG Inc., 7100 Main Street, Trumbull, CT 06611, U.S.A.; 21nsurance Institute
Glebe Road, Arlington, VA 22201, U.S.A.

CRASHES:

ROBERT

G.

for Highway

ULMER~

Safety, 1005 North

(Accepted 5 April 1995)

Abstract-There

were 2074 crashes fatal to a motorcycle driver in the United States during 1992. A computer
program was developed to convert Fatal Accident Reporting System (FARS) data for these crashes into standard
generated
reports were analyzed and crash type
format English language crash reports. The computer
categories were defined. Five defined crash type categories accounted for 1785 (86%) of the 2074 crash events:
Ran off-road (41%); ran traffic control (18%); oncoming
or head-on (11%); left-turn oncoming (8%); and
motorcyclist
down (7%). Alcohol and excessive speed were common factors associated with motorcyclist
crash
involvement.
Left turns and failure to yield were comrilon factors associated with the involvement
of other
motorists. Suggested countermeasures
include helmet use and enforcement of speed and impaired driving laws.
Keywords-Motorcycle,

Fatal, Crashes,

Classification,

Safety, Countermeasures

There are effective ways to reduce motorcyclist


death and injury. State laws requiring
the use of
motorcycle
helmets for all riders are particularly
effective in reducing serious injury (see, for example,
Watson et al. 1981; McSwain et al. 1985), but there
are 22 states that require helmet use only for young
riders and three states have no helmet use laws at all.
Olson et al. (1981) found that motorcycles with their
low beam headlights on during daylight could more
easily be seen by other motorists. Zador (1985) found
that states requiring
daytime motorcycle
headlight
use had substantially
fewer daytime motorcycle fatalities. Although only 20 states require motorcyclists
to
ride with headlights on during all hours, all manufacturers voluntarily
equip motorcycles with headlamps
that are automatically
on when the engine is running.
To determine
if there are additional
feasible
countermeasures
that can reduce motorcycle crashes
and crash injuries, a more thorough
understanding
of how and why these crashes occur, using more
current data, is needed. One technique for studying
how and why crashes occur, and for developing
targeted countermeasures,
is crash type analysis. This
technique was developed by Snyder and Knoblaunch
(1971) and applied to urban pedestrian
crashes. It
has also been applied to rural pedestrian
crashes
(Knoblauch
1977), bicycles (Cross and Fisher 1977),
urban vehicle crashes (Retting et al. 1995), and crashes
on limited access highways (Preusser et al. 1994).
Crash type analysis involves the development
of

Motorcycles,
which are a small subset of all motor
vehicles, are greatly overrepresented
in fatal crashes
in the United States. The death rate per registered
motorcycle
(59 per 100,000) is approximately
three
times the death rate per registered passenger car ( 17
per 100,000) (FHWA 1990). Death rates calculated
per vehicle, however, do not take into account the
substantially
lower mileage traveled by motorcycles.
Per mile traveled, the death rate for motorcycles
is
estimated to be 22 times higher than the comparable
death rate for passenger cars (IIHS 1993a; FHWA
1990).
Many of the available
motorcycle
crash and
injury analyses are based on data that are decades
old. In an examination
of 2410 motorcycle crashes in
North Carolina
during 1972, Griffin (1974) found
that, when a car and motorcycle collide, the motorcyclist nearly always sustains the more severe injury
(p. 44). Griffin also found that the left-turn maneuver
by passenger
cars was greatly overrepresented
in
motorcycle-involved
multiple-vehicle
crashes. Similar
results were reported by Olson (1989) for daytime,
car-motorcycle
crashes in Texas during 1986. Hurt
( 1981) examined 900 motorcycle crashes occurring in
Los Angeles during 1976-1977 and concluded
that
motorists failure to see the motorcycle
in time to
avoid a crash was a major crash causation factor (see
also Williams and Hoffman 1979).
*Author for correspondence.
845

846

Brief Communications and Research Notes

definitions that identify groups of crash events with


common causal and/or pre-crash characteristics, such
as common driver behavior, roadway situations, and
movements of the involved vehicles. The focus is on
pre-crash driver behavior and vehicle movement
within defined roadway situations. Crash resultants
such as overturn or side impact are much less
important as these could result from any of multiple
factors during the crash itself. Developing crash types
is conventionally based on three steps: (1) analyzing
police crash reports and classifying crashes based on
common pre-crash behavior and/or situations; (2)
reading additional reports to test the integrity of the
preliminary classification; and (3) developing crash
type definitions for each of the identified crash groups.
Data from the Fatal Accident Reporting System
(FARS) (NHTSA 1993) indicate that 2074 highway
crashes resulted in the death of one or more motorcycle drivers during 1992. In the present study, crash
type analysis was applied to the available FARS data
for these crashes to determine how and why they
occurred. Identified pre-crash behavior and/or roadway situations were used to suggest possible
countermeasures.
METHOD
Computer files of coded FARS data for 1992
(N = 2290 motorcycle driver and passenger fatalities)
were obtained from the National Highway Traffic
Safety Administration. FARS is a census of all motor
vehicle crashes on public roads in the United States
in which a fatality occurs and is based on police crash
reports from the states. Information from police crash
reports is coded using standardized categories and
definitions. Coded data for all crashes fatal to one or
more motorcycle drivers (N=2074 crashes) were
included in this study.
The numerically coded information contained in
the FARS census was used to prepare a crash report
for each crash event. That is, the process by which
the narrative information in police crash reports was
converted to standardized numerical codes for data
processing was reversed. A standard format conversion of the digital information into its English language equivalent was accomplished. A computer
program was develop to read the data, refer to look
up tables to find the appropriate descriptive phrase,
and format the phrases into sentences and data
summaries.
Figure 1 shows a sample crash report generated
from the coded information contained in FARS. This
sample report involved a head-on collision between
a motorcycle and a car, at night, on a two-way
undivided roadway. (The date and location of the

crash have been deleted.) The software used to generate these reports was originally developed for an
earlier study in which both the FARS codes and the
original police crash reports were available (IIHS
1993b). The standard format computer generated
reports, while lacking the full information contained
in the original police report, proved to be quite
descriptive, easier to read and much easier to combine
across varying police crash report formats from
different states. Also, as happened frequently in the
earlier study, the computer reports provided data in
cases where the original report was not released by
the state.
Half of the computer generated crash reports
(N= 1037) were reviewed by one analyst who developed a preliminary set of crash type groups and
preliminary definitions. The remaining reports (N =
1037) and the preliminary group definitions were
reviewed by a second analyst. Working together, and
cross-reviewing selected cases from each other, the
two analysts finalized the crash type definitions and
made final crash type assignments for the 2074 crash
events. Computer codes for each of the crash type
definitions were appended to the original FARS
record for each case, and statistical data were
tabulated.
The final crash type list included 10 defined crash
types plus one category for other and unknown.
Figure 2 lists the identified crash types, their respective definitions and FARS codes commonly associated
with each. The assignment of any given crash to any
given crash type relied on analyst agreement that the
characteristics of the event were most consistent with
the definition for the given crash type.
Though not done in this study, it is presumably
possible to entirely automate crash type assignment.
In a related study (Williams et al. 1995) computer
software was developed for crash type assignment.
The results showed approx. 90% agreement between
computer and analyst assigned crash type codes. In
general, the analyst was using more information,
better sequencing of information and better weighting
of information to develop an understanding of crash
dynamics. Additional development of the software
would be needed to improve on the 90% figure
cited above.
RESULTS
Of the 10 crash types considered, the most frequently occurring crash type was ran off-road, followed by ran traffic control, oncoming (i.e. head-on),
left-turn oncoming, and motorcyclist down. Taken
together, these five most frequent types accounted for
86% of the 2074 crashes. Table 1 shows the distribu-

Brief Communications

and Research Notes

847

On Thursday [Date] at I:00 am, a motorcycle operator was killed in a 2 vehicle crash in [County,
State]. The crash site [Street Name] was an urban principal arterial, with undivided two-way
traffic and 4 travel lanes. The roadway was straight and level with a 40 mph speed limit. The
crash was not at an intersection and occurred on the roadway. There were no traffic controls.
It was dark but lighted, the weather was clear, the road surface was dry. The crash involved
collision with a motor vehicle in transport. This was a head-on collision.
Vehicle I
registered
43 mph.
maneuver

was a 1978 Honda Motorcycle (350-449cc). The operator was alone. The vehicle was
in [State]. The driver in the crash was not the vehicle owner. Estimated speed was
The vehicle was going straight prior to the crash. Possibility of crash avoidance
was unknown. This was a striking vehicle (impact point 12).

Driver License: Issuing state was [State], license status was suspended.
Driver Record:
Previous Crashes: 0 Previous Suspensions: 1
Previous Speed: 0
Previous Other Moving: 0

Previous DWI: 1

A driver factor driving on wrong side of road was reported.


The motorcycle operator, a 28 year old male, was killed in the crash. No helmet was worn.
It was unknown whether police reported on alcohol involvement for this person.
An alcohol test showed a BAC of .I 8 percent.
Vehicle 2 was a 1983 Honda, Civic, 2-Door Sedan. There was one occupant.
The vehicle was registered in [State]. The driver in the crash was the vehicle owner.
Estimated speed was 45 mph. The vehicle was going straight prior to the crash.
Driver was braking to avoid crash. This was a striking vehicle (impact point 12).
Driver License: Issuing state was [State], license status was valid single class license.
Driver Record:
Previous Crashes: 0 Previous Suspensions: 0
Previous Speed: 3 Previous Other Moving: 1

Previous DWI:

The driver, a 27 year old female, sustained an evident injury (6).


No occupant restraints were used. This person was not ejected from the vehicle.
Police reported alcohol was not involved for this person.
No alcohol test was given.
Comments:

Multiple vehicle, BAC showed alcohol for motorcycle operator, on roadway, urban

Fig. 1. Sample crash report.

of crashes by type for all crashes and separately


for single-and multiple-vehicle events. Each of these
10 crash types is discussed below.
Ran off-road crashes involve situations where
the motorcyclist leaves the roadway and overturns or
strikes some off-road object. This is the most frequently occurring motorcycle crash type accounting
for 41% of the total. These are often late night,
weekend crashes involving a motorcyclist who had
been drinking. Off-road objects struck include: culvert, curb, or ditch (24% of the 857 crashes); posts
and poles (11%); trees (10%); and guardrails (10%).
This crash type, unlike the other crash types, most
often occurs on a curve in the road (71% at curves
vs 21% for all other crashes). Most are single-vehicle
crashes though occasionally the motorcycle, the
driver, or debris from some off-road impact, returns
to the roadway and some other vehicle becomes
involved. Commonly assigned FARS Driver Factors
included failure to keep in proper lane or running off
tion

the road (70% of the 857 crashes), driving too fast


for conditions or in excess of the posted maximum
(61%) and operating the vehicle in an erratic, reckless,
careless or negligent manner (12%). There was little
indication (2%) that the motorcyclist was avoiding,
swerving or sliding because of animals in the road,
other vehicles, pedestrians, ice, road deformities or
other obstacles.
Ran traffic control crashes occur when one vehicle with an obligation to stop, remain stopped, or
yield, fails to do so and thus collides with some other
vehicle. This was the second most frequently occurring
motorcycle crash type accounting for 18% (375) of
the total. Most occurred at intersections (72%), driveways and alleys (7%), or interchanges (4%). The traffic
control device was most often a stop sign (39%) or
traffic control signal (18%). Nearly all (97%) were
angle collisions. Of the 375 events, 342 involved
just one motorcycle plus one other vehicle. Analysis
of these 342 crashes indicated that it was the driver

Brief Communications

848

Common

Ran Off Road

FARS Codes Associated

with Each Crash

Type

A motorcyclist leaves or strays off the travel lane(s) and overturns


strikes an off road object (guardrails, rocks, trees, etc.).
Typically

single

Typically

not collision

Off road

(includes

Common

Ran Traffic
Control

and Research Notes

or

vehicle
with motor

shoulder,

Driver Factor:

vehicle

media,

Failure

in transpolt

roadside,

to keep in proper

parking

lane and gore)

lane or running

off road

A vehicle which has a requirement to stop, remain stopped or yield


disregards the requirement and collides with some other vehicle(s).
Multiple

vehicle

Typically

angle

Typically

intersection

collision
or driveway

related

roadway

Impactpoints

indicate

crash
Common

that the vehicles

(or roadway

were approaching

on different

roadways

pnor

tothe

and driveway)

Driver Factor: Failure to obey traffic signs, traffic control devices


failure to observe safety zone; also failure to yield right of way

or traffic officers,

Vehicles traveling in opposite directions collide (includes head-on and


sideswipe opposite direction crashes).
Multiple

veh/cle

Head-on

or sideswipe

opposite

direction

On roadway
Common

LT Oncoming

Driver Factor:

to keep in proper

lane or running

off the road

In the process of making a left-turn in front of oncoming traffic; struck or


strikes a vehicle that is coming from the opposite direction and that has
a superior right of way.
Multiple

vehicle

Head-on,

sideswipe

Typically

intersection

0 roadway
One vehicle
Impact

opposite

direction

or driveway

or angle

related

turning /eit, the other going straight

points

Common

Motorcyclist
Down

Failure

indicate

that the vehicles

Driver Factor:

A motorcyclist
down.

Failure

toyield

were coming

from opposite

directions

right of way

loses control of the vehicle in the roadway

and goes

Non collision
On roadway
Common

Run Down

Driver Factor: Driving

of the posted

speed

vehicle

Front-to-rear
0

impact

points

roadway

Lead vehicle
Common

traveLng

Driver

at unimpeded

Factor:

Driving

speed

too fast for conditions

or m excess

of the posted

speed

A vehicle stopped, stopping or just starting up in a travel lane is hit from


the rear.
Multiple

vehicle

Front-to-rear
On roadway
Lead vehicle
Common

Road Obstacle

or in excess

One vehicle runs down another vehicle traveling in the same direction
striking it in the rear. Unlike Stop/Stopping the vehicle struck in the rear
was traveling at an unimpeded speed prior to the crash.
Multiple

Stop/Stopping

too fast for conditions

impact

points

s/owing,

stopped

Driver Factor:

or starting

Following

in traffic lane

improperly

A motorcyclist strikes an object in or on the roadway


Typically

sing/e vehicle

Typically not collision


0 roadway
Common

Driver

Factor:

with motor
Avoiding,

Fig. 2. ~ continued

veh!cle

in transport

swerving

or sliding

opposite

due

to[objects

in the road]

Brief Communications

and Research

Notes

849

Fig. 2. - continued
Lane Change

A vehicle in a travel lane swerves or moves into another same direction


travel lane that is already occupied.
Multiple vehicle
Sideswipe same direction
On roadway
One vehicle changing lanes, merging or passing
Common Driver Factor: Improper or erratic lane changing

cut off

A vehicle making a turn, turns in front of a vehicle or into a vehicle


traveling in the same direction.
Multiple vehicle
Sideswipe same direction
On roadway
One vehicle
Common

Other/Unknown

turning left or right

Driver Factor:

Improper turn [Mr. right or other]

Crash types which occur infrequently


assignment could be made.
Fig. 2. Crash

Table 1. Distribution

Motorcycle

of motorcycle
crash types by single-vehicle
and multiple-vehicle
crashes

crash type

Ran off road


Ran traffic control
Oncoming
Left turn oncoming
Motorcyclist
down
Run down
Stopped/stopping
Road obstacle
Lane change
cutoff
Other/unknown
All

Singlevehicle
crashes
831

83

49

33
996

Multiplevehicle
crashes

All
crashes

26
375
225
176
69
69
66
2
28
25
17
1078

857
375
225
176
152
69
66
51
28
25
50
2074

%
(41.3)
(18.1)
(lO.Sj
(8.5)
(7.3)
(3.3)
(3.2)
(2.5)
(1.4)
(1.2)
(2.4)
(100)

of the other vehicle, not the motorcyclist, who was


most often assigned the FARS driver factors failure
to yield right of way or failure to obey traffic signs,
traffic control devices or traffic officers, failure to
observe safety zone (184 vs 94). That is, in many
cases, the motorcycle had the superior right of way.
The driver factor most often assigned to the motorcyclist was driving too fast for conditions or in excess
of posted maximum (107 vs 8) indicating, at least in
some of these cases, that the motorcycle was
approaching the intersection at a high rate of speed
making it difficult for the other motorist to detect the
motorcycle in time.
Oncoming, or head-on, crashes involve a collision between two vehicles traveling in opposite directions. This was the third most common motorcycle
crash type accounting for 11% (225) of the total. Few
of these crashes occurred at intersections (5% vs 25%
for all other crash types) and few occurred on divided
highways (7% vs 25%). About half occurred on
straight roadways and half occurred on curves. Driver
factors, typically failure to keep in proper lane or

and crashes for which no type

type definitions.

running off road and/or driving too fast for conditions


or in excess of the posted maximum, were most often
assigned to the motorcyclist (158 vs 58).
Left-turn oncoming crashes, as with the oncoming crash type described above, involves vehicles
traveling in opposite directions. However, for this
crash type, one of the vehicles is in the process of
making a left-turn in front of oncoming traffic. This
was the fourth most common crash type accounting
for 8% (176) of the total. The left-turn was almost
always being made by the other vehicle and not the
motorcycle (175 of 176 events). That is, the motorcycle
almost always had the superior right of way. This
crash often occurred at intersections (69%) or at
driveways and alleys (7%).
Motorcyclist
down crashes cover situations
where the motorcyclist loses control of the vehicle
and goes down in the roadway. The motorcycles
could have struck the roadway or have been struck
by some other vehicle after going down. This was the
fifth most common crash type accounting for 7%
(152) of the total. Generally, it could not be determined why the motorcycle went down. The loss of
control could have been a deliberate action on the
part of the motorcyclist (i.e. putting the bike down)
to avoid some perceived threat ahead. These crashes
occurred on dry (93%) level (73%) roadways that
were straight (56%) or curved (43%).
The preceding five most common crash types
accounted for 86% of all crashes studied. The
following types were substantially less common; each
accounted for ~4%.
Run down crashes (69 crashes) cover situations
where one vehicle runs down another vehicle traveling in the same direction striking it in the rear. The
vehicle struck in the rear was traveling at an unimpeded speed prior to the crash. Most often, it was the

850

Brief Communications

motorcycle that came from behind and ran down the


other vehicle (48 crashes vs 21 crashes).
Stop/stopping crashes (66 crashes) are similar to
run down except that the lead vehicle struck in the
rear was stopped, stopping, or just starting to move
immediately prior to the crash. The lead vehicle could
have slowed or stopped for any reason including
traffic congestion or a traffic control device. Most
often, it was the motorcycle that came from behind
striking the other vehicle (54 crashes vs 12 crashes).
Road obstacle crashes (51 crashes) cover cases
where the first harmful event involved striking
something other than a motor vehicle in transit on
the road. This could have been an animal (19 crashes),
a parked motor vehicle ( 15 crashes), debris (8), a
pedestrian (4 crashes), oil slick (1 crash), or
other/unknown (4 crashes).
Lane change crashes (28 crashes) and cut off
crashes (25 crashes) both involve a motorcycle and
at least one other vehicle traveling in the same
direction. In lane change crashes, one of these vehicles
swerves or moves into the others lane. In cut off
crashes, one of these vehicles attempts to make a turn
across the others lane.
All remaining events were classified as other (50
crashes). The more salient characteristics of these
remaining crash events were: a police chase (24
crashes); collision with a train (7 crashes); inclement
weather (4 crashes); vehicle backing (5 crashes); vehicle defect (1 crash); and crash circumstances unknown
(10 crashes).
Most of the 2074 crashes occurred in the spring,
summer and early fall (14% occurred in May followed
by 13% in both June and July) and on weekends
(21% on Saturday followed by 20% on Sunday and
15% on Friday). Ran off-road crashes were most
common at night (50% 8 p.m.-3:59 a.m.). Ran traffic
control and left turn oncoming were most common
in the afternoon and evening (51 and 57% respectively
between noon and 7:59 p.m.). Ran off-road and
oncoming were typically rural events (53 and 65%
respectively). Ran traffic control and left-turn oncoming were typically urban (67 and 72% respectively).
Also, most of the 2074 crashes occurred on
dry pavement (94%) with no adverse weather
conditions (96%).
Nearly all of the fatally injured motorcycle drivers were male (98%). Median motorcycle driver age
was 29.2 years with little variance in motorcycle driver
age across the crash types. Helmets were reportedly
worn by 55% of the fatally injured motorcycle drivers,
38% were not wearing a helmet, and helmet use was
unknown for the remaining 7%. Helmet use was least
common for those involved in ran off-road crashes
as opposed to other crash types (48% vs 60% helmet

and Research

Notes

use for all other crash types). During the 3 years prior
to the crash, 35% of the fatally injured motorcycle
drivers had been convicted of a previous speeding
violation, 23% had one or more prior license suspensions, 20% had been involved in one or more previous
crashes, and 9% had been convicted of impaired
driving.
Table 2 shows crash type by blood alcohol concentration (BAC) for fatally injured motorcyclists in
states that tested at least 80% of all fatally injured
motorcycle drivers. During 1992, 33 states (and the
District of Columbia) tested 80% or more of their
fatally injured motorcycle drivers for alcohol. Overall,
598 (53%) of the 1120 fatally injured motorcyclists
who were tested were positive for alcohol, and 41%
had BACs of 0.10% or greater. Ran off-road was the
crash type with the most alcohol involvement. For
this crash type, 72% had positive BACs, and 59% had
BACs of 0.10% or greater. Ran traffic control and
left-turn oncoming crashes showed the least motorcyclist alcohol involvement.
DISCUSSION
Although developing crash types using only
FARS data is limited by the unavailability of the
crash diagram and the full narrative description of
the event contained in the investigating officers crash
report, there are also several unique advantages. The
standard training of FARS analysts and the standard
format for all FARS case coding make it possible to
combine data from different states without loss of
accuracy, thus providing national coverage. FARS
also accesses data from several sources providing
additional information beyond the crash report alone.
The most important finding in the present study
was that five defined crash types accounted for 86%
of all of the motorcycle crash events studied. Two of
these types, ran off-road and oncoming, are predominantly the result of one or more errors (i.e. FARS
driver factors) on the part of the motorcyclist. Both
typically involve a motorcyclist who leaves the appropriate travel lane(s) either running off the road or
colliding with a vehicle coming from the opposite
direction. Both tend to occur more frequently in rural
areas, on higher speed roadways and at curves. Ran
off-road crashes are very often alcohol related.
Countermeasures designed to promote helmet use
and reduce drinking and driving, and excessive speed,
would be appropriate.
Ran traffic control and left-turn oncoming
involve an interaction between the motorcyclist and
one or more other drivers. Unlike ran off-road and
oncoming crashes, they occur more often at intersections, in urban areas, during times of the day when
more traffic would be expected, and are less often

Brief Communications

Table 2. Percentages

of most

common

Ran off road

%BAC (N =)
0.00

0.01-0.09
0.10-0.19
0.20 +
All

and Research

crash type by motorcycle


motorcycle drivers; excludes

Ran tr. control

On-coming

851

Notes

driver BAC (excludes


BAC unknown)
LT on-coming

states

Biker down

with

~80%

Other

BAC tested

types

All

(481)

(190)

(119)

(92)

(90)

(148)

(1120)

28
13
34
25
100

66
16
12
6
100

51
13
16
20
100

13
13
11
3
100

63
10
14
12
100

51
11
24
14
100

41
13
24
17
100

alcohol-related. Typically, the motorcyclist has the


superior right of way just prior to the crash, and
some other vehicle fails to grant this right of way
moving into the path of the motorcycle.
Possible countermeasures
include improved
signal timing, enforcement of stop and yield obligations, and improved sight distances at intersections
particularly in cases where the smaller motorcycle
may remain blocked from view long after larger
vehicles have become visible. Motorcycle drivers
might reduce their chances of becoming involved in
these two crash types by maintaining lane discipline
(not popping out from some unexpected location),
wearing conspicuous clothing, and by avoiding
excessive speed when entering an intersection.
The fifth most frequent crash type in the current
study was motorcyclist down, and generally, information was not available to determine why the motorcycle went down. None of the remaining crash types
accounted for more than 4% of the events studied.
Nevertheless, one possible countermeasure for run
down and stopped/stopping crashes is avoiding excessive speed on the part of the motorcyclist since it is
the motorcycle that most often rear-ends the other
vehicle. Lane change and cutoff crashes might be
reduced by encouraging lane discipline, reducing
improper passing, and searching for vehicles to the
side and rear before making a turning or passing
maneuver. In general, however, the crash type analysis
confirms that the most important and feasible means
of reducing motorcyclist injuries are through iaws
requiring helmet use, and through the enforcement of
speed limit and alcohol-impaired driving laws.
Acknowledgements-This
work was supported
by the Insurance
Institute for Highway Safety. The opinions, findings, and conclusions are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the
views of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

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accidents: Identification
of problem types and countermeasure
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DOT-HS-4-00982.
Washington,
DC: U.S. Department
of Transportation;
1977.
Federal Highway Administration
(FHWA). Highway Statis-

tics 1990. Washington,


DC: Federal Highway Administration; 1990.
Griffin, L. I. III. Motorcycle Accidents: Who, When, Where,
and Why. Chapel Hill, NC: Highway Safety Research
Center, University of North Carolina; 1974.
Hurt, H. H., Jr. Motorcycle accident cause factors and identification
of countermeasures.
DOT-HS-805-862-3.
Washington,
DC: U.S. Department
of Transportation;
1981.
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Facts, 1993
Edition. Arlington, VA: Insurance Institute for Highway
Safety; 1993.
Insurance
Institute
for Highway
Safety (IIHS). Status
Report: One Day of Fatal Crashes. Arlington, VA: Insurance Institute for Highway Safety; 1993.
Knoblauch,
R. L. Causative factors and countermeasures
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