Is it dangerous to drive a motorcycle in Hong Kong?

在香港開電單車是否危險?

Did you know: “metal wrapped in skin” is a nickname Hong Kongers give to all motorcycles? The reason being that in a car crash, motorcyclists and their passengers are more likely to get injured. Is there truth to this nickname? If so, how do we avoid traffic accidents? Moreover, what do we do once an accident happens? Today at Kwiksure, we’ll get to the bottom of just how dangerous it is to drive motorcycles in Hong Kong.

Traffic accidents involving motorcycles are few in number

Looking at the Transport Department (TD)’s statistics, you can see that motorcycles are involved in very few accidents. In 2019, there were 2,678 cases of road accidents involving motorcycles, compared to a total of 9,310 for private cars. With that said, there have always been fewer motorbikes on the road (58,937 registered licenses) than private cars (573,932). So, we need to take into account the number of licensed vehicles on the road. 

Generally speaking, the accident rate is higher in motorcycles than in private cars. Per 1,000 licensed motorcycles, the accident rate is 47.1% versus 16.3% for licensed cars. As for per million kilometers traveled, the accident rate for motorbikes is 6.82% whereas it’s only 1.46% for private cars.

TD published a report on the number of injuries and deaths in drivers, sorted by circumstances of injury and vehicle types. In 2019, there were 2,461 injuries and fatalities involving motorbikes. Motorcyclists were injured or died in a whopping 91.9% of these cases. As for private cars, the numbers were 3,157 cases of death and among those, 33.91% were injured or diseased.

 

Motorcycle

Private cars

Number of licensed vehicles

58,937

573,932

Cases of traffic accidents

2,678

9,310

Cases of injuries or fatalitiess

2,461

3,157

Driver injury and fatality rate

91.9%

33.91%

Accident rate per 1,000 licensed vehicles

47.1%

16.3%

Accident rate per million kilometers

6.82%

1.46%

 

What kind of accidents are motorcycles prone to?

Amid 2,678 cases of road accidents, 97 of which crashed into pedestrians, 1,406 slammed into other vehicles, 114 collided with objects, and 1,061 cases didn’t involve crashing into any vehicles. 

Based on the news report, the most common motorcycle accidents are stopping before the give-way marking or traffic lights and being crashed into. The second most common is being collided into by a car while it was switching lanes. As for traffic accidents with no collisions involved, the majority of them occur because drivers lack experience, the road was slippery from the rain, or caused by turning or braking without a firm grip on the ground. 

Lower the risk of motorcycle accidents

To reduce your chance of road accidents, check out these safety tips for riding a motorcycle in Hong Kong. Despite your best wishes, if one befalls you, remember to stay calm! Here’s our easy-to-follow infographic on what to do in the event of a car accident.

Motorcycle insurance is a must

Driving a motorcycle carries a higher chance of accidents. This is why you need the right motorcycle insurance. In the event of a traffic mishap, motorcycle insurance can protect your finances so you can focus on healing. For instance, you won’t have to worry about medical fees or compensatory damages.

Contact Kwiksure for your insurance solution

Besides car insurance (third-party and comprehensive), we also provide home insurance, motorcycle insurance, VHIS, and more. Get a free quote now with our handy online quotation system. Got any insurance-related questions? With over 20 years of experience in the insurance industry, our team of expert insurance advisors is more than happy to provide you with impartial advice. Contact us today so we can help you find your perfect insurance solution!