Riding a motorcycle can feel exciting, freeing and even safe, at least until you get into an accident. In that split second, the other driver makes a mistake, and you realize just how little control you have over your own safety.

The truth is that a motorcycle accident is almost guaranteed to at least injure the rider. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says that about eight out of every 10 motorcycle accidents leave riders with injuries or takes their lives. This means that they end up in the hospital or worse in the vast majority of accidents, with just a handful of them walking away unscathed.

Riding feels safe when you haven’t crashed because you feel like you’re in control, and you can avoid the accident. The problem is that you only control half of your safety on a bike. You can drive safely, follow traffic laws, obey the speed limit and make no mistakes at all. Even so, another driver can fail to yield the right of way, cut you off, rear-end you at an intersection, run a red light, drive under the influence — the list goes on and on. Any mistake that they make could mean you get involved in an accident, despite your own clear record.

And, when that happens, there’s about an 80% chance that you will be injured or killed in that crash. That’s just the statistical game that you’re playing every time you ride your bike. If you do get seriously injured, you must know what legal steps to take.