Trends and patterns in fatal US motorcycle crashes, 2000–2016

Urmimala Chaudhuri, Kendra L. Ratnapradipa, Sijun Shen, Thomas M. Rice, Gary A. Smith, Motao Zhu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Objective: To investigate trends of motorcyclist fatalities and identify at-risk populations by motorcyclist demographics and crash characteristics. Methods: We used the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) database (2000–2016) to track fatality rate trends, which were quantified by using Poisson mixed-effects regression models comparing 2000–2001 and 2007–2008, as well as 2009–2010 and 2015–2016. Results: The overall fatality rate per 100,000 population increased from 2000 to 2016, defined by two trend lines—before and after the economic recession in 2008–2009. The overall fatality rate ratio between 2000–2001 and 2007–2008 was 1.60 [95% Confidence Interval (CI): 1.51–1.70], and between 2009–2010 and 2015–2016 was 1.09 (95% CI: 1.02–1.18). Fatality rates increased among all age groups, particularly for motorcyclists aged 60 and older. Those aged 18–29 had the highest fatality rates overall. Age-and-sex standardized state fatality rates were consistently highest in Wyoming, South Dakota, and South Carolina and lowest in Massachusetts, New York and New Jersey. Conclusion: Motorcycle fatality rates increased overall and across all age groups between 2000 and 2016. Fatalities for the oldest riders showed the steadiest increasing trends. Results highlight the continued public health burden of motorcyclist fatalities and, by extension, the importance of improving motorcycle safety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)641-647
Number of pages7
JournalTraffic Injury Prevention
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Motorcycle
  • age
  • fatality
  • trends

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Safety Research
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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