Recent research published in the medical journal, BMJ, has found that the risk of fatal motorbike accidents increases by 5% when there is a full moon. In light of these findings, bikers are being urged to take extra care when venturing out at night under a full moon.
The Research Findings
The research found that there is a 5% increase in the risk of having a fatal motorcycle accident during a full moon compared to a half moon. Dr Donald Redelmeier, who conducted the research with Eldar Shafir, commented, “5% is a great big deal when it comes to road safety.”
Even more interestingly, on nights when there was a ‘supermoon’ the risk of a fatal crash increased by a shocking 32% compared with similar nights when there was a half moon. A ‘supermoon’ is a phenomenon that occurs where where a full moon appears bigger and brighter than a regular full moon.
The research looked at motorcycle accident data across the USA from the past 40 years, analysing crash figures during a full moon, the week before and the week after. Researchers then found similar results when analysing data from the UK, Australia, and Canada.
Why Does the Moon Impact on Bikers’ Safety?
So, why does the risk of a fatal motorcycle crash increase when there is a full moon? There’s no definitive explanation for this, but there are a number of theories.
One of the leading theories is that a full moon is particularly distracting to bikers. Any form of distraction while driving, even if only for a moment, can have disastrous consequences. A full moon illuminating the night sky could distract a biker’s attention from the road for long enough to cause an accident.
Redelmeier explained, “Glancing at the full moon takes the motorcyclist’s gaze off the road, which could result in a loss of control.”
Another possible explanation is the affect a full moon has on the light may cause bikers to misjudge the speed they’re travelling at. It has also been suggested that more motorists might take to the roads during a full moon, which in turn increases the risk of an accident occurring.
How Bikers Can Reduce the Risk
This research acts as a stark reminder than even the most seemingly insignificant of distractions can have life changing effects. The researchers concluded that the findings of their study highlight the importance of maintaining constant attention while biking.
You may feel that paying attention to the road when biking goes without saying, but it’s important to be aware of the increased risk that bikers face on nights when a full moon can easily divert their attention away. In light of these findings, bikers are urged to take extra caution and pay careful attention when riding at night under a full moon.
What to Do if You Have Been Injured in a Motorcycle Accident
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident and you believe that you may be entitled to make a claim, speak to our Personal Injury Solicitors, who can provide you with free legal advice that’s tailored to your circumstances. Once you have provided details of your accident, your injuries and any damage sustained to your bike, a Personal Injury Solicitor will review your claim for compensation and help you to understand whether you have a reasonable chance of success.
As soon as we take on your claim, we can arrange for a medical expert to assess your injuries. The appropriate course of treatment for you can then be identified and the first steps can be taken to start supporting you through your recovery.