Riding a motorcycle is inherently more dangerous than driving a car, as stated by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Motorcycles are smaller, less visible, and less stable than four-wheeled passenger vehicles. They are far more likely to crash in emergency maneuvers such as swerving or braking.
Motorcyclists lack the protection of an enclosed vehicle, including seatbelts and airbags, and are more vulnerable to serious injuries in a wreck. Per vehicle miles traveled in a recent year, motorcycle fatalities amounted to nearly 29 times the number of traffic fatalities in cars. Motorcycles represent approximately 5% of highway fatalities every year, but account for only 2% of all registered vehicles, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
What Are the Obligations of Cars on the Road Alongside Motorcycles?
Passenger vehicle drivers need to know that motorcyclists have the same rights to share the road as they do. They must yield the right-of-way to motorcycles in the same situations in which they would be required to yield to other cars. As motorcycles are smaller and less visible than cars, drivers have an obligation to check their blind spots carefully and look for motorcyclists before making a left-hand turn at an intersection. Drivers should also be aware that a rider may need to downshift and swerve to avoid bumps in the road and other hazards.
How Do Motorcycle Accidents Occur?
While motorcycle accidents can happen for many reasons, the leading causes involve human error or negligence. Common causes of motorcycle crashes include:
- Failure of drivers to register motorcycles in the roadway
- Drivers making a left-hand turn into the path of a motorcyclist
- Hazardous road conditions, such as uneven pavement, slippery surfaces, loose gravel, or debris
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Distracted driving
- Speeding or reckless driving
What Types of Injuries Do Motorcyclists Suffer?
Lacking the protection of an enclosed vehicle, motorcyclists are more likely to suffer serious injuries in a crash. Common motorcycle accident injuries include:
- Traumatic brain injury — common when a rider is thrown from the bike
- Disfiguring facial injuries – impact with the roadway can strip away skin and tissue
- Biker’s arm – nerve damage caused by landing on one or both arms
- Fractured bones — shoulders, wrists, elbows, hips, pelvis, and spine)
- Road rash – a type of skin abrasion that occurs when a rider is thrown from the bike and slides along a hard surface
- Damage to the lower extremities – legs, knees, ankle, hips, feet
- Organ damage, internal bleeding — Internal injuries caused by force of impact
After a Motorcycle Accident Caused by a Negligent Driver
If you have been seriously injured in a motorcycle crash that was someone else’s fault, you have a right to seek compensation for your losses. Damages you may be entitled to claim may include past and future medical expenses, lost earnings, loss of future earning potential, permanent impairment, scarring and disfigurement, pain and suffering, and other losses. The first priority is to get medical treatment for your injuries. As soon as you are able, speak with an experienced personal injury attorney about your options under the law.
Why Choose Us?
At Allen Law, we offer one-on-one contact with your lawyer and a smaller feel as opposed to a large, mill-type firm. Attorney Julian Allen is a skilled negotiator and trial lawyer with more than 15 years of legal and trial experience. He is a former insurance defense attorney with insight into how “the other side” works. After a serious motorcycle crash, contact us at (843) 882-5005 to schedule a free initial consultation with no time limit. We work on a contingency fee basis, meaning you pay us no fees until we recover compensation for you.