blank 12/15/15 11:43AM Motorcycle Safety, Motorcycle Trends, Rider Safety

Colorado Motorcycle Safety Statistics

Motorcycle Stats

Current Colorado statistics, rider data, motorcycle trends and attitudinal survey results.

Key findings

  • 90 riders and passengers were killed in motorcycle crashes in Colorado in 2007, the highest ever recorded (that averages almost 8 deaths every month)
  • From 2003-2007, 402 motorcycle riders or passengers were killed in traffic crashes

88% of those killed were men
30% of those killed were ages 18-34
24% of those killed were ages 35-44 
44% of those killed were age 45 or older
80% of those killed were either not wearing a helmet or it was improperly used 
Alcohol was a factor in 35% of the motorcycle traffic deaths

Key findings

  • Ownership of motorcycles is concentrated in a few geographic areas. (Jefferson and El Paso Counties combined hold more than 25 percent of the state's motorcycles, while the combination of Jefferson, El Paso , Arapahoe, Adams and Larimer hold almost exactly half of the state's motorcycles.)
  • Small rural counties in Western Colorado have the most motorcycles per capita in the state
  • Rural Eastern Plain counties had the greatest percentage of "large" motorcycles within their boundaries
  • Motorcycles in urban counties are more likely to be newer (2001 model year or younger)

Key Findings

  • 70% of respondents believed that riders of sport motorcycles were the least safe of all riders. The safest riders were considered to be riders of touring bikes, cruisers and standard motorcycles
  • 55% of respondents believed that motorcycles riders are more likely to drive safely and defensively compared to drivers of vehicles
  • Drivers are more likely to assume blame by the car in a car-motorcycle crash. When respondents were asked who's typically at fault in an accident, the majority indicated that it was equally split between driver and rider. However, those who did assign "typical" blame were more likely to blame the car by 3 to 1.
  • The majority of survey participants considered motorcycles a safe means of transportation, as well as believing that motorcycle riders operate their bikes in a safe manner
  • More than 70% respondents believed that helmets and training were the most important elements for ensuring motorcyclists safety
  • Support for a helmet law was also high amoung respondents


Key Findings

  • Cruisers were the most common type of motorcycles owned
  • Respondents were typically older males over the age of 44 and made more than $50,000 annually
  • Respondents primarily ride motorcycles for fun
  • Respondents typically learned to ride at a young age and learned teaching themselves or through a family member. (Less than one third of riders had taken additional instruction courses to improve their riding)
  • Over 94% of respondents either had a license or intended to get one. Of those that had licenses, most did so by taking the written and driving tests at the Colorado Department of Revenue
  • Respondents like to ride because it is exciting and fun
  • Nearly all respondents knew that Colorado didn't have a helmet law, and only about one-third would support such a law
  • While many respondents would oppose a helmet law, more than half indicated that they always wear a helmet (riders of small bikes were more likely to always wear a helmet)
  • Respondents believed that training was the most important element of safety
  • Respondents recognized dangers associated with riding, but also believed that motorcycles are a safe form of transportation (only 39% believed motorcycle riders receive the training they need to drive safely)
  • Respondents felt that other drivers were their biggest threat to safety

Data Source:

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