A sunset on a busy road

How the time of day affects motorbike accidents

Learn more about when its most dangerous to ride your motorbike on UK roads

Motorbiking is a popular mode of transportation in the UK, offering an exhilarating ride and a sense of freedom that is hard to replicate in a car. However, it is also a mode of transportation that comes with its fair share of risks. One of the biggest factors affecting motorbike safety is the time of day. In this article, we will explore how the time of day affects motorbike road traffic accidents in the UK, and what riders can do to stay safe on the roads.

When do most motorcycle accidents happen?

According to statistics from the Department for Transport, the majority of motorcycle accidents in the UK happen during the daytime. In fact, over two-thirds of all motorcycle accidents occur during daylight hours, with the peak period being between 3 pm and 6 pm. During this time, the roads are busier with commuters heading home from work, and there is often a lot of congestion and stop-start traffic, which can make it difficult for motorcyclists to maneuver safely.

However, just because the majority of accidents happen during the day doesn’t mean that riders should let their guard down at night. In fact, although only a minority of accidents occur after dark, they tend to be more severe. This is partly due to reduced visibility and the fact that drivers may find it harder to spot motorcyclists in the dark.

What is the safest time of day to ride?

While it’s impossible to completely eliminate the risk of a motorcycle accident, there are certain times of day that are generally safer to ride than others. The early morning is considered to be one of the safest times to ride, particularly on weekends when there is less traffic on the roads. This is because the roads are quieter, and visibility tends to be better as the sun rises. However, riders should still take precautions and be aware of any potential hazards on the road.

Another relatively safe time to ride is during the middle of the day when traffic is less congested. However, riders should still remain alert and focused on the road ahead, particularly in built-up areas where there may be a lot of pedestrians and other vehicles.

A wall clock showing ten past ten

Factors that affect motorcycle safety

While the time of day is certainly a factor that can affect motorcycle safety, there are other factors that riders should also be aware of. One of the biggest is weather conditions. Rain, wind, and fog can all make riding more difficult and increase the risk of an accident. Riders should always check the weather forecast before setting out on a journey and be prepared to adjust their riding style accordingly.

Another factor to consider is the type of road. Rural roads are often more challenging to ride than urban ones, particularly if they are narrow or winding. Riders should take extra care on these types of roads and be prepared for unexpected hazards, such as wildlife crossing the road.

Finally, riders should also consider their own skills and experience. Novice riders are at greater risk of accidents than experienced ones, particularly when it comes to cornering and braking. It’s important to build up experience gradually and take additional training if necessary to improve skills and confidence.

Why do accidents occur at night?

Accidents that occur at night tend to be more severe than those that happen during the day, partly due to reduced visibility. Even with headlights and streetlights, it can be more difficult to see obstacles on the road, such as potholes or debris. In addition, drivers may have reduced depth perception and peripheral vision, making it harder to spot motorcyclists on the road.

Another factor that can contribute to night-time accidents is fatigue. Drivers who are tired may have slower reaction times and reduced concentration, increasing the risk of a collision.

Taking extra precautions when riding your bike at night

If you do need to ride your motorbike at night, there are several extra precautions you can take to minimize the risks. Firstly, ensure that your bike is equipped with good quality headlights and taillights, and that they are functioning properly. Consider adding reflective tape to your helmet or clothing, to make you more visible to other road users.

You should also adjust your riding style to suit the conditions. Slow down and increase your following distance, to give yourself more time to react to hazards on the road. Avoid sudden maneuvers or aggressive braking, as these can be harder to spot for other road users.

Finally, make sure that you are well-rested and alert before setting out on a night-time ride. Take regular breaks to stretch your legs and refocus your attention, and avoid riding for long periods without a break.

Taking these precautions can help minimise the likelihood of an accident. However, they are still possible so if you suffer any type of accident on your bike, it is best to contact National Claims. We will be able to put you in the best position to understand the claims process as well as where you stand at each point of your claim. 


In conclusion, the time of day can have a significant impact on motorcycle safety in the UK. While the majority of accidents occur during the daytime, accidents that happen at night tend to be more severe due to reduced visibility and driver fatigue.

If you do need to ride your motorbike at night, it’s important to take extra precautions to minimize the risks. This includes ensuring that your bike is well-equipped with lights and reflective gear, adjusting your riding style to suit the conditions, and taking regular breaks to stay alert and focused on the road. By taking these precautions, you can enjoy the freedom of riding your motorbike while keeping yourself and other road users safe.

Contact National Claims today to get a start on your claim to see if you are eligible for compensation regarding your motorcycle injuries.

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