If you are considering a trip abroad, you may be concerned with terrorist activities, violent crime or political unrest in foreign countries. In addition, you may be concerned about vaccinations, unsafe drinking water, and illnesses. Yet what most travelers don’t worry about, is actually the number one cause of death among Americans who travel abroad: car and motorcycle crashes.

Depending on the country you are visiting, however, those types of road crashes can range from pedestrian accidents to deadly motorcycle crashes. A recent study out of John Hopkins University reviewed excessive amount of data and revealed some startling statistics.

Dr. David Bishai led the research team, and together, they reviewed data from the U.S. State Department. According to this research, 5,417 deaths occurred between January 2003 and December 2009. Their research also revealed the countries American tourists were most likely to die in a road crash.

·       #1 – Thailand (16.5 deaths per one million visits)

·       #2 – Vietnam (15 deaths per one million visits)

·       #3 – Morocco (12 deaths per one million visits)

·       #4 – South Africa (11 deaths per one million visits)

In particular, researchers found that scooter and motorcycle deaths accounted for a large portion of all traffic related deaths. And that more deaths from collisions occurred in less developed countries than in richer more developed countries. In Mexico, 682 American travelers died from January of 2003 through June whereas only 32 died the same year in Canada.

If you are planning a trip abroad soon, the U.S. Department Bureau of Consular Affairs has issued travel warnings that include countries with high levels of violence, terrorist activity, and government instability. In addition, be sure to check out a map of the area and familiarize yourself with roads, local laws, and the terrain. If you are renting a motorcycle make sure you check it over (lights working, tire pressure, previous damage, liquids, etc) before your take off with it.

You can also follow these safety tips for traveling:

·       Always wear your seat belt

·       Always wear a helmet

·       Obey all local traffic laws

·       Familiarize yourself with driving laws and speed limits

·       Never mix alcohol and driving—especially abroad

·       Carry a GPS with you at all times in case you get lost


At Russ Brown Motorcycle Attorneys®, we want you to be safe no matter where your travels take you. That’s why we created BAM, a free roadside and legal assistance program. With nearly 2 million members and counting, BAM is still the nation’s largest network of Bikers Helping Bikers®. To learn more about BAM or our law firm, call us at 1-800-4-BIKERS or visit us on the web at RussBrown.com. We Ride—We Care—We WIN!