Older bikers 'more likely to get injured'

US study over over 1.5 million accidents reveals the big picture

BIKERS over the age of 60 are three times more likely to end up hospitalised after a crash than their younger counterparts, according to a US study.

The report analysed data from between 2001 and 2008 which was collected from over 100 hospitals with A&E departments. Over 1.5 million motorcycle-related accidents were recorded in this period.

Motorcyclists over the age of 60 were three times more likely to be admitted to hospital and two and a half times more likely to sustain a serious injury compared to those in the 20 to 30 year old age group.

The study's authors said that the delayed reaction time and worsening vision were factors against older riders, while their greater extent of injuries may be due to decreased bone strength.

Speaking to the BBC, the BMF's Chris Hodder said: "There are fewer accidents here in the UK than the US - we've had a good rider training programme over the last 40-50 years - while in the US training has been a mixed picture due to its size and differences across states. Also drink-driving is a much bigger problem there.

"There are plenty of post-test courses in the UK. If you are coming back to motorcycling it would be good to look out for refresher training. Those that ride regularly should keep their skills up."