New Data Reveals South Carolina as The Most Dangerous State for Motorcyclists


A recent study identifies South Carolina as the state with the most dangerous roads for motorcyclists.

The new report was released by Auto Justice and uses data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the US Department of Transportation. The data determined the number of motorcycle accidents occurring annually in each state, taking into account the 10.5 million motorcycles registered across the country. To provide a clearer picture of the accident landscape, the data calculated a ranking based on the number of crashes per 100,000 motorcycle registrations in each state.

South Carolina is the most dangerous state for motorcyclists, where each year, for every 100,000 motorcycles registered in the state, 158.1 riders are involved in a fatal crash. That’s enough motorcyclists to fill three standard Greyhound buses and a 174.5% increase on the national average of 57.59 crashes. South Carolina also saw more front, right, and rear collisions with motor vehicles than any other state per 100,000 registered motorcycles.

Texas is the second most dangerous state for motorcycle riders. For every 100,000 motorcycles registered in the Lone Star state, more than 157 riders are involved in fatal crashes. Texas riders face the highest rates of collisions with fixed objects (which can include road signs or low-hanging branches), recording 38.74 per 100,000 motorcycles. These incidents involve everything from static structures like mailboxes to natural obstructions like trees.

North Carolina is the third most dangerous state for motorcyclists. The state not only saw 124.13 fatal crashes for every 100,000 motorcycles registered in the state, but it also saw the highest occurrence of left-side collisions with motor vehicles, at 8.98 per 100,000 motorcycles. This is more than four times the national average of 2.19 and 34% higher than the second highest of 6.70 in the state of Texas. According to the US Department of Transportation, over half of the total fatal and injury-related accidents in America happen at or close to intersections.

Missouri ranks fourth among the states with the highest motorcycle danger, recording 119.8 fatal crashes per 100,000 registrations, equivalent to about five classrooms filled with motorcyclists. Additionally, it places tenth in collisions with fixed objects, with a rate of 24.25 per 100,000 motorcycles.

Mississippi ranks fifth among the most dangerous states for motorcyclists, with 116.39 fatal crashes per 100,000 registrations. Additionally, it’s ninth for collisions with fixed objects at 24.50 per 100,000 motorcycles.

Nevada ranks sixth as the state with the most dangerous roads for motorcycles, with 112.73 crashes per 100,000 registered motorcycles. The Silver State also ranks thirteenth for collisions with fixed objects, where for every 100,000 registered motorcycles in the state, 23.06 were involved in this type of collision.

Florida ranks seventh with 104.48 crashes per 100,000 registered motorcycles. The state also saw 18.51 collisions with fixed objects per 100,000 registered motorbikes, ranging from street lamps to fire hydrants, and is 31% higher than the national average of 14.08. The Sunshine State also ranked fourth nationally for head-on collisions and fifth for rear-end collisions.

Kentucky ranks eighth, and New Mexico ranks ninth with 102.28 crashes and 97.36 crashes per 100,000 registered motorcycles, respectively. Kentucky ranked fourth overall for collisions with fixed objects at 30.09 per 100,000 motorcycles.

Delaware places tenth as having the most dangerous roads for motorcycles, with 94.5 crashes occurring for every 100,000 motorcycles registered in the state.

The state with the most dangerous roads for motorcyclists:

Rank State Crashes per 100,000
registered motorcycles
1. South Carolina 158.10
2. Texas 157.01
3. North Carolina 124.13
4. Missouri 119.80
5. Mississippi 116.39
6. Nevada 112.73
7. Florida 104.48
8. Kentucky 102.28
9. New Mexico 97.36
10. Delaware 94.50
11. Hawaii 94.35
12. Georgia 88.69
13. Louisiana 86.95
14. Tennessee 86.01
15. Connecticut 80.51
16. Maryland 78.26
17. Colorado 77.65
18. California 71.35
19. Michigan 69.58
20. Idaho 65.87
21. Alabama 63.26
22. Virginia 62.20
23. New Jersey 62.03
24. West Virginia 60.88
25. Pennsylvania 60.74
26. Indiana 60.67
27. Oregon 60.35
28. Illinois 57.52
29. Ohio 54.78
30. Arizona 54.63
31. Rhode Island 52.35
32. Wyoming 51.70
33. Kansas 49.63
34. Massachusetts 48.14
35. Vermont 47.70
36. Oklahoma 46.76
37. Nebraska 41.05
38. Washington 37.90
39. Wisconsin 37.04
40. Maine 35.09
41. Iowa 35.06
42. Minnesota 31.71
43. Utah 29.79
44. New Hampshire 28.23
45. Alaska 27.22
46. New York 23.61
47. Arkansas 23.11
48. North Dakota 21.42
49. South Dakota 10.32
50. Montana 6.89
US Average 57.59