Motorcyclists love riding their bikes. They go out on long rides in groups. There are roads across the country that draw motorcycle riders like moths to a flame, many of them scenic mountain roads that are long, with lots of curves, steep drop-offs that go down hundreds of feet, fantastic vistas, and no intersecting roads, like U.S. 129 through the Tennessee-North Carolina Smoky Mountains, known as the Tail of the Dragon. They ride for the joy of riding, the fellowship, and just the feeling of freedom that riding a motorcycle can bring. They aren’t cooped up in a car, they have a feeling of being outside, and the experience is like no other on the road.
The motorcycle experience is also the most dangerous way to take to the highway. In 2016, nearly 5,300 motorcyclists died in traffic accidents, amounting to 14 percent of all traffic fatalities event though motorcyclists account for nowhere near 14 percent of all motorists. In fact, motorcycles represent only 3 percent of all registered vehicles in the U.S. in 2016, drove only .6 percent of all vehicle miles traveled, yet the fatality rate for motorcyclists was six times the rate for occupants of passenger vehicles. Measured by vehicle miles traveled, motorcycle fatalities were almost 28 times more frequent than fatalities for passenger car occupants.
If You Are in a Motorcycle Accident, You Need to Ask Some Questions
Just as with passenger car drivers, if you drive a motorcycle often enough, far enough, and for enough years, you likely will be involved in a traffic accident. Unlike with passenger cars, however, there are very few “minor” traffic accidents for a motorcycle rider. Minor car collisions might only result in some vehicle damage and no fatalities. That same accident, but involving a motorcyclist, might still only result in minor vehicle damage for the car, but the motorcycle rider is hitting the ground. There will be injuries, even if it is “only” road rash, consisting of potentially significant harm caused by sliding along the ground, sometimes even under the motorcycle, following an accident. If you have been involved in a traffic accident while riding a motorcycle, there are questions you should consider, including:
- What if the accident wasn’t my fault? You should do everything you can at the scene to gather information you will need later if you are able to do so. Get the other driver’s insurance information from the other driver. Take pictures. Get witness information if possible. And after you get any medical treatment you need, talk to a car motorcycle accident lawyer. A motorcycle accident attorney can help you protect your rights, and potentially recover compensation for your damages. This could include property damage, medical bills, lost wages, and other forms of damages.
- The other driver’s insurance company offered me a settlement check right away. Should I take it? The answer is almost always “no.” It is likely to be a lowball offer.
- What if my spouse or a close family member dies in a motorcycle accident? If an immediate family member, particularly your spouse, is killed in a motorcycle accident because of the fault of the other driver, it is possible you could recover damages in a wrongful death claim. Once again, you should seek legal help to see if you can recover compensation.
- What steps can I take to protect myself when I am on my motorcycle? A significant majority of motorcycle fatalities are the result of head injuries. Non-fatal head injuries can be extremely serious, as well, leading to severe trauma that can require long-term care — sometimes even life-long care. Wear a helmet. Almost half of motorcyclists killed in accidents, and more than half of their passengers who die in accidents, were not wearing helmets at the time. Protective clothing helps guard against many minor injuries, but a helmet can be a life-saver
If You Have Been Injured in a Motorcycle Accident, Contact a Miami Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Motorcycle accidents can result in serious injuries requiring expensive, and often long-term, care. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, you should talk to a Miami motorcycle accident attorney to find out what your options are for recovering damages. Contact Flagler Personal Injury Group at (305) 424-8445 or through our online contact form. Flagler Personal Injury Group serves the greater Miami area.
We handle a variety of cases, so call us now if you have any questions.
View more contact information here: Miami Personal Injury Lawyer.