COMMON CAUSES OF MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENTS
The most common cause of motorcycle accidents can be summarized in two words: Blind spot. Freeway collisions often occur when a motorist is changing lanes, and a motorcyclist is coming up slightly behind them. That’s when the majority of motorcycle accidents occurs. The driver fails to see the biker, and merges into them while changing lanes.
You are probably familiar with the slogan “look twice, save a life,” which relates to the blind spot causing crashes. It also relates to a number of other common causes of motorcycle accidents. This includes drivers who do not see an oncoming motorcycle and fails to yield when making a left turn, or pulling out in front of an oncoming motorcycle because they did not spot it before deciding to exit a parking lot or moving from a stop sign.
COMMON INJURIES TO MOTORCYCLISTS
Due to the nature of riding a bike, the injuries to a motorcyclist can be horrific. Unlike typical auto accidents, when the victim is encased in what amount to a big cage of metal, motorcyclists have very little protection. Helmets and leather gear can protect riders from scrapes, road rash and some head injuries in a minor crash, but they do not offer the type of protection necessary to prevent severe injury in a major collision at interstate speeds.
Motorcyclists can often be sent flying in a crash, sometimes hundreds of feet through the air. In some cases, they land in front of oncoming traffic, and are run over by other cars. Even if they are wearing a helmet and other protective gear, injuries to their limbs, neck, back and head can be severe. The trauma to their bodies is simply much more significant in most cases than someone who was in a similar car accident at the same speed.
OTHER IMPACTS OF A BIKE CRASH
Overcoming the physical injuries after a motorcycle collision can be a long, trying process. In some cases, permanent disability occurs and a full recovery is not possible. This can mean months or even years of pain and suffering, in addition to an inability to return to your previous lifestyle. This may include hobbies, outings with your family and even your job. If you can no longer work, you will most likely feel both stress and guilt since you cannot provide for your family in the way that you could previously.
Despite the fact that California requires all motorcycle riders to wear helmets, traumatic head injuries are still very common in severe collisions. Head injuries can not only cause lasting physical disabilities, they sometimes cause personality changes and emotional difficulties as well. The victim’s loved ones no longer feel they know their injured family member or friend.
MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENTS VS. REGULAR AUTO ACCIDENTS
While there should not be a drastic difference between motorcycle crashes and regular auto accident cases, our experience with this type of claim tell us that there is an inherent or innate prejudice in our system against motorcyclists. A lot of people on the road have prejudices against all motorcyclists because of the few riders who refuse to abide by traffic laws. These motorcyclists weave in and out of traffic, using the gaps and spaces between cars to get ahead in traffic. They ride recklessly at high speeds, and cut off motorists when passing other vehicles.
Because of this prejudice, many motorists attempt to blame a significant amount of fault on the motorcyclist after an accident. An attorney’s help is necessary to counter this issue. An experienced attorney can demonstrate that the driver of the other vehicle failed to follow the rules of the road, while also providing proof that there was little or no comparative fault on the part of the motorcyclist.
Aside from this complication, and the more severe injuries suffered in a bike crash, motorcycle accident claims mirror traditional auto accident cases in almost every way. After showing liability on the part of the other driver, your attorney will provide evidence of your medical bills and lost wages, and then show your pain and suffering through your testimony, and the testimony of expert witnesses. From there, you can negotiate a fair settlement or the court will determine how much compensation you will receive.
BENEFITS OF ENLISTING AN ATTORNEY’S HELP
Comparative fault is often a big question in insurance claims following a motorcycle accident, and having an experienced attorney on your side is the only way to ensure you do not make a misstep that makes this situation worse. Your attorney should work with you to ensure that you only provide the insurance company — or court, if a personal injury lawsuit becomes necessary — with evidence that supports your case. When people are already primed to blame the motorcyclist for an accident, you must be especially careful what you say to the insurance adjuster or other parties to prevent them using your statements against you.
An experienced attorney is also important because of the nature of injuries that often occur in this type of collision. Motorcyclists commonly suffer neck and back injuries in a motorcycle accident that are not immediately symptomatic. Instead, they manifest themselves months or sometimes even a year or 18 months after the accident. To establish a strong link between the accident and a later manifestation of a neck or back injury requires the help of an attorney and a team of medical professionals who are familiar with these cases. Triebsch & Frampton, APC has a network of healthcare providers who can help diagnose and treat your injuries, as well as ensure we have the documentation we need to include these injuries in your claim.
CHOOSING TRIEBSCH & FRAMPTON, APC
Triebsch & Frampton, APC has a track record of getting recoveries for people who have been injured in motorcycle accidents. We understand motorcyclists, and know how to get them the compensation they deserve after an accident. We understand the rules that apply to them and to other vehicles, and so we go to bat for them.
If you have suffered a personal injury after a bike crash, we can help, Call Triebsch & Frampton, APC, attorney in Central Valley, today at (209) 667-2300.