Articles Posted in Motorcycle Accidents

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Whether helmets prevent death in a motorcycle crash is an interesting question and one that, statistically speaking, is answered in the negative.

While numerous states have mandatory helmet laws and some do not, the whole argument about wearing or not wearing a noggin protector mostly boils down to whether they prevent death. The interesting answer is not likely. The helmets protect the skull from serious injury, but often the cause of death in a motorcycle versus car accident is due to other reasons. In fact, existing federal data shows that most bikers who die would have been killed even if they had been wearing helmets.

On the other side of the coin, if a biker lives to tell his Atlanta personal injury lawyer about the crash, you can assume they have sustained some fairly serious injuries that would lay them up long-term or permanently. This brings us back to the argument about wearing helmets to prevent death. In reality, the risk a rider takes, whether they wear a helmet or not, is crashing. If you get into a head-on collision while doing 80 mph, your head is not the only part of your body that will take a beating.

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Ever wonder why the insurance company takes forever and a day to pay up on a motorcycle crash claim? The answer will surprise you.

Anyone who has ever been in a motorcycle accident and who has not hired a skilled Atlanta personal injury lawyer to assist them with their claim will likely have stories about how long it took for the insurance company to settle. There is a reason for that and chances are you will not like what you hear. However, it is the truth and you will understand why it’s a strategic and smart move to get legal counsel.

It’s a no brainer that motorcycle accidents are just about the worst kind of wrecks on the road today, largely because the biker has very little in the way of protection. That usually means some significant injuries. If the claim for those injuries were to be settled the right way, as in the insurance company paying out what the injuries are really worth, this would cost the insurance company a chunk of change.

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Reading the accident statistics involving motorcycles is depressing. Most often, bikers are killed because no one sees them.

It is hard to be invisible on the road when you are in a car, but being invisible on the road when you are on a motorcycle is all too common. The most often repeated phrase when the police arrive at a bike wreck is the driver of the car repeating over and over: “I just didn’t see him.”

Kind of makes you want to think twice about being a biker, doesn’t it? Along with the risks of being creamed by another vehicle, there is virtually zero rider protection. The physical injuries sustained in motorcycle crashes are legion, usually ugly and often life-altering or terminal. Many Atlanta personal injury lawyers see some horrific crashes in their practices. A motorcycle versus car wreck and happen any time, any place and the results aren’t going to be good.

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Motorcycles are unique vehicles. Nothing else can approximate the thrill of riding in the open air. Unfortunately, they are high-risk rides.

There is no question that riding a motorcycle is one of the greatest thrills on planet Earth. It is a super-charged rush to get on the open road and boot it. While you might be a very safe rider, it’s the people in other vehicles that you have to watch out for, because they often just don’t see you, no matter how big your bike happens to be.

In fact, not seeing you is the most commonly cited cause of motorcycle accidents. Unfortunately, it also means that bikers get hit more often than other vehicles and sustain severe injuries and may ultimately lose their lives. Education is a good start to reduce the number of motorcycle crashes on the road. Improving others’ driving skills and alertness would help. The problem is, some drivers just don’t seem to understand that bikers are smaller vehicles of which they need to be aware. Sadly, just about 70 percent of the wrecks involving bikers are due to the negligence of a motorist.

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In another case of a driver not seeing a motorcyclist, this biker hit the back of a truck. He died shortly after the impact.

In this case a 57-year-old biker was out for a Saturday afternoon ride. About halfway along to his final destination, a teenager driving a pickup truck turned left right in front of the motorcyclist. The biker had no place else to go and couldn’t stop immediately and hit the right rear of the truck.

The force of the impact was so great that the biker was ejected and landed hard on the pavement. When the EMS crews arrived, they pronounced the man dead at the scene. The 18-year-old teen was not injured in this accident.

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Laying down a motorcycle and sliding to avoid fatal injuries saved this man’s life. The car driver that caused the accident was oblivious.

This is another case we heard about and were interested in because we handle a fair number of motorcycle accidents every year. Many of them are fatal. This one was not, but it did cause the rider a lot of grief in the long run.

“This happened in 2007 and involved a Honda custom motorcycle that was traveling along a highway when a car heading in the opposite direction to the biker suddenly made a left turn a few feet in front of him without signaling. With no place else to go, the biker did the smart thing and laid his bike down on its side and slid behind it to avoid a fatality,” recounted Stephen M. Ozcomert, who handles personal injury cases, accidents, and malpractice law in Atlanta, Georgia.

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If an individual survived a motorcycle crash they will need to have an idea of what to do to get their claim settled. Don’t do this as a solo act, as dealing with an insurance company may mean settling for less than may be awarded through the courts.

In the event of a motorcycle accident, the first thing that needs to be done is to figure out how serious everyone’s injuries are.That is the first and only priority at the scene of an accident. If a person is able to use a cell phone or ask someone else to call for help, do so. If the accident was the result of someone else’s negligence, don’t bother getting into it with them about who is in the wrong or who is in the right. This can be sorted out later when a personal injury attorney has been hiredto represent an insurance claim.

The next thing to do is to prevent those involved in the accident from any further harm. Put out any available flares to warn off traffic. This will also help preserve the accident scene. Do no move any of the vehicles involved in the accident as this will just confuse the issue later if the case goes to court. Destroying evidence by moving a vehicle will count against the plaintiff, so be smart and just leave things for the police to handle. When they’re done with their investigation, they will have the bike moved.

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Car to motorbike collisions usually leave at least one person seriously injured or dead, but the insurance company wants to minimize its payout.

If a biker happens to survive a motorcycle crash they may find out that they have been crippled for life. Perhaps the collision was not the biker’s fault and he or she feels everything will be fine because it is covered by the insurance company. It’s a good thing the premiums were paid regularly every year, there were no claims, and the coverage was second to none.

With all these things on the side of the motorcycle rider, they would have every right to expect fair and prompt compensation from the insurance company. While the biker may “expect” that would be the case, it often isn’t what happens. Many motorcycle accident attorneys know that the insurance company is not a friend to anyone; and definitely not friendly if there is a severe injury that may require years of treatment and millions of dollars.

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When a recession hits those who want to downsize their cars or give them up to save on gas, they usually opt to buy a motorbike. Not a bad idea, but with that choice comes an increased risk of serious personal injuries or even death.

In Georgia alone in 2008 there were over 390,000 motorcycles registered. That shouldn’t come as any great surprise in light of the state of the American economy. Gas prices are ridiculous and people are hunting for alternative methods to get to work and other places. In other words, they want a cheaper ride. On the other side of the fence, even though the ride is indeed a whole lot less expensive than owning a car, there are a lot of distracted (cell phone and texting) drivers out there. Add reckless drivers into the mix and this is a guaranteed recipe for disaster.

Know the laws of the state chosen to bike in, as every state does have different laws passed that are intended to help protect vehicle drivers and motorcyclists. In most states the law reads that bikers have many of the same rights and duties as other vehicles on the road.

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