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Motorcyclists not to blame in most accidents

Published: 29 March 2013

Updated: 20 November 2014

New data from more than 1600 motorcycle accident last year have shown 80% of accidents were caused by other road users; a fact that flies in the face of controversial BBC programme ‘How Safe are Britain’s Roads?’ shown last year.

The BBC show claimed ‘loss of control on a bend’ was the main cause of motorcycle accidents but of the 1679 accidents analysed by insurance company Groupama NONE were caused by loss of control on a bend but four out of five were caused by other road users.

Groupama conducted in-depth analysis of 1679 motorcycle insurance claims made during July and September 2012 – the peak time of year for claims.  They found that the main cause of accidents on motorcycles is other road users either changing direction or emerging from a junction, inducing a collision.

Groupama stated: “Of all the claims reviewed, 11 resulted in the death of the policyholder.  Of this number, loss of control was the cause of the accident for three policyholders.  None had lost control on a bend.

Of the 1679 claims analysed 81% included a third party/liability aspect – that is, where the accident involved another vehicle.  Just 19% were single vehicle accidents.  Of those that included a third party/liability aspect, 44% resulted in the policyholder pursuing a claim against the third party for personal injury.”

Darren Wills, Claims Director for Groupama Insurances said: “How Safe are Britain’s Roads? prompted heated discussion on online motorcyclist forums.  As a leading motorcycle insurer with a specialist motorcycle claims team dealing with the unhappy consequences of accidents day in day out, we were immediately sceptical about the statements made on the programme.

They claimed that the majority of deaths happen on rural roads with loss of control on bends being the most common cause.  This simply didn’t correlate with the claims we receive and as one of the largest insurers of motorcyclists in the UK, we have a very accurate picture of the real causes of motorcycle claims.”

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