4 Facts About Road Rash

Road rash is one of the most common injuries riders suffer in motorcycle accidents. It’s something everyone who owns a motorcycle should know about. While in many cases road rash is a minor injury, in severe cases it can be debilitating and have life-altering consequences. 

Road rash occurs when an individual is thrown off of their motorcycle and their skin rubs against a hard surface such as gravel or asphalt. The area of the skin that rubs against the hard surface suffers from cuts, scrapes, and abrasions, almost as if the skin is burned from the friction. 

The following are four facts about road rash that will help every motorcycle enthusiast better understand what it is and how to prevent it.

There are Thousands of Cases of Road Rash Every Year

A study released in 2013 by the National Trauma Data Bank revealed that more than 20,000 cases of road rash were reported that year. Of those cases, most patients were treated and discharged to their home.

However, a very significant percentage of cases required a hospital stay, which on average lasted more than five days. These numbers show just how common road rash is and how severe those cases can be.

It is Common to Have Broken Bones in Addition to Road Rash

Because of the impact of landing on the pavement, it is common for patients who have road rash to also have a broken bone. While this doesn’t necessarily mean the road rash is more severe, it does make treating it more challenging. 

Many cases of road rash are treated at home. Treatment usually includes:

  • Thoroughly washing the affected skin or wound with soap and water
  • Removing any debris found in the wound, such as gravel or dirt
  • Generously applying an antibiotic ointment
  • Covering the wound with a bandage
  • Repeating the above steps regularly to guard against infection

It is also imperative that you wash your hands thoroughly before treating road rash as bacteria from your hands can get into the wound and cause an infection. If the wound does become infected or doesn’t improve within a few days, you should seek medical attention as soon as possible.

The Best Way to Prevent Road Rash is To Cover All Skin When Riding a Motorcycle

As you might have guessed, road rash usually affects the areas of the skin that are left exposed. In the event of an accident, the exposed skin rubs against the pavement and causes road rash. 

Road rash can and does occur on a number of different areas of the body. This includes:

  • Ankles
  • Legs
  • Knees
  • Arms
  • Wrists
  • Hands

It is advised that you cover each of these areas every time you ride. In addition to wearing the appropriate gear, you can also minimize your chances of suffering from road rash by driving carefully and monitoring your surroundings every time you drive your motorcycle.

Road Rash Can Cause Permanent Scarring

In the most extreme cases of road rash, debris, and particles from the site of the crash can actually become embedded in the skin and cause permanent scarring. Anything from the crash site such as gravel, dirt, broken glass, and more can penetrate the skin and cause damage.

The best way to prevent permanent scarring is the same as preventing road rash in general. Drive safely and cover all vulnerable areas every time you ride.

If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident and are suffering from road rash, contact a skilled personal injury attorney immediately. A good lawyer will be able to assess your case and determine whether or not you could be eligible for compensation.

Road rash can be costly to treat and you should not have to pay for treatment on your own. If your injuries are the result of another party’s negligence your lawyer will help you recover the damages that can help you get your life back.