It’s Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, and the Ontario Provincial Police are keen to remind you to be careful out there. To that end, the OPP has released some statistics on the 2012-2021 motorcycle fatalities on the province’s roads. And, according to the OPP’s stats, motorcyclists were at fault in the majority of these crashes.
According to the OPP, the provincial police force has responded to 326 fatal motorcycle crashes in the past almost-decade, with 342 fatalities (bike-on-bike or rider-and-pillion crashes would account for the higher number of fatalities). Motorcyclists often blame other road users for their crashes, but Ontario’s statistics don’t necessarily back that up. The OPP says in 60.7 percent of these fatal crashes, the motorcycle was to blame—another vehicle was at fault in only 39.3 percent of the collisions.
Lest you think the OPP has skewed these numbers, the police force also noted that 120 of these fatal crashes were single-vehicle collisions, with no possibility for any other motorist to blame.
The press release says “The data is a stark reminder that there can be zero risks and errors on the part of motorcyclists and that even the safest, most defensive riders must rely on nearby motorists exercising the same degree of safety in order to avoid causing a deadly crash.” As we’ve seen in the past few years, expect a social media blitz and other media roll-outs to remind motorists and particularly bike riders of safety practices throughout the summer.
Remember that this is not the total number of fatal crashes for Ontario, which would also see Toronto and other municipalities’ police forces responding to crashes.
I really disagree with this, stats are miss leading and most officers are not motorcyclists, I was both. 30 yrs and never once found motorcyclist was at fault. Statistics are very miss leading
Personal experience can also misrepresent the larger picture by dealing with such an extremely small sample size. Over the years of me riding, I hit the pavement many times. All were fairly minor accidents, but all but one were 100% my fault and my fault alone. Statistics can mislead, but so do small, empiric data sets. At the end of the day, only large sample sizes that are analyzed by objective players without agendas really can lead towards the truth. That’s a rather tall ask since any organization spending the money to crunch the numbers will almost always have an agenda that frames the lens through which they view the data.
And if you’re hooning down a 60 km/h city road doing 120, IMO the car driver who doesn’t anticipate you approaching at twice the speed limit and pulls out in front of you is not to blame.
There’s only one person you can depend on for your safety on the roads – youself.
This is a sobering reminder for all riders. When I was younger I didn’t have the respect for the dangers that speed brought to the equation. I’m fortunate to have lived through the stunts I pulled. Now that I’m old and ride within the average speeds of other road users it’s amazing how few close calls happen. As riders we are responsible for our own actions. 130 single bike fatalities speaks volumes.
*120 single bike fatalities