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For the first time since 20 years the German national statistics of traffic accidents revealed an increasing number of fatalities and seriously injured persons in 2011. This negative development was especially caused by increasing numbers in all groups of vulnerable road users (VRU). Furthermore, the comparison of fatality reduction rates between several categories of road users shows that persons on motorcycles show the worst performance over years. Although every second fatality in German traffic accidents is still a car occupant, users of PTW make up more than 20% in the meantime. Assuming further improvements in the field of occupant protection this trend will continue.
For that reason, a study on the basis of real-world accidents was conducted to describe the accident scenario involving motorcycles and to identify the reasons of the above-described fact. Approximately 1.800 motorcycle accidents out of GIDAS database were used for the analyses.
The first part of the study deals with the question how representative the GIDAS database is for the German motorcycle accident scenario. Afterwards, detailed descriptive statistics on motorcycle accidents were presented considering numerous parameters about the accident scene, environmental influences, vehicle information, individual characteristics, interview data, injury severity and injury causation. One important point is the identification of the most frequent critical situations that are typical for motorcycle accidents. Furthermore, a special focus was on accident causation. Finally, conspicuous facts out of the analysis are emphasized.
All in all, the study gives a comprehensive overview about the German motorcycle accident scenario. One the one hand, the use of weighted GIDAS data allows representative and robust statements on the basis of large case numbers; on the other hand highly detailed conclusions can be drawn. The results of the study help to understand the particularities of motorcycle accidents and provide approaches for further improvements in the field of PTW safety.

Paper_Liers_Motorcycle accidents.pdf


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