Drivers are expected to safely share the road with motorcyclists. Unfortunately, too many motorcycle accidents happen because drivers fail to notice motorcycles or don’t know how to safely operate their car around a motorcycle. When a motorcycle accident occurs, it is almost always the motorcycle rider who ends up worse for wear. Drivers need to familiarize themselves with the common mistakes that motorists make around motorcycles so that they know what behaviors they need to avoid on the road.
Common Driver Errors That Lead to Motorcycle Accidents
Some of the most frequent mistakes that drivers make that lead to collisions with motorcyclists include:
- Unsafe or illegal left turns – Unsafe or illegal left turns represent the plurality of motorcycle accidents involving another motor vehicle. An illegal left turn can cause a motorcycle accident when the motorcycle operator does not anticipate a vehicle turning in front of them. Unsafe turns occur when a driver misjudges the speed of an oncoming motorcycle or doesn’t see a motorcycle at all, fails to signal their turn, and/or does not yield the right of way. Left-turn accidents often result in head-on collisions that can throw a motorcycle rider from their bike.
- Unsafe lane changes – Drivers may make unsafe lane changes when they fail to signal or to check their mirrors and blind spots before moving into another lane. Drivers also often fail to notice a smaller motorcycle in their side-view mirror before making a lane change.
- Speeding – A speeding driver has less time to react to avoid a collision with another vehicle. This poses a particular risk with motorcycles, which can accelerate, brake, and maneuver much more quickly than larger vehicles, leaving even less time for a driver to react to a motorcycle.
- Tailgating – In particular, tailgating a motorcycle, or following too closely, is a huge risk for a rear-end accident. Because motorcycles can slow down more quickly than other vehicles, a tailgating driver can easily run into the back of a motorcycle.
Injuries Suffered by Riders in Motorcycle Accidents
Because a motorcycle rider doesn’t have the protection of a vehicle body or other safety systems like seat belts and airbags, a motorcycle wreck can easily cause serious physical injuries such as:
- Road rash, abrasions, and avulsions
- Broken bones
- Ligament sprains and tears, or muscle/tendon strains and tears
- Neck and back injuries, including whiplash or herniated disc injury
- Nerve damage
- Internal organ injuries
- Facial injuries
- Spinal cord injuries and paralysis
- Traumatic brain injury
- Crush damage
How Can a Motorcyclist Get Compensation for Their Injuries?
If you were injured in a motorcycle crash that was caused by a careless driver, you may be entitled to pursue a legal claim against the driver and their insurance company to recover compensation for your losses, either through a settlement or by winning a lawsuit against the at-fault driver. A motorcycle accident claim can allow you to obtain a financial recovery for expenses and personal losses such as:
- Medical expenses, including hospitalization, surgeries and other medical procedures, prescription costs, purchases of mobility equipment, doctor’s appointments, or physical/occupational therapy
- Lost wages and income if you need to take time off work to recover from motorcycle accident injuries
- Loss of future earnings and job benefits if you become permanently disabled from gainful employment
- Motorcycle repair expenses, or reimbursement for the value of your bike if it is declared totaled
- Physical pain and emotional anguish
- Loss of enjoyment and quality of life because of disabilities or disfigurement/scarring caused by your injuries
Contact an Edison Personal Injury Lawyer to Discuss Your Motorcycle Accident Case in New Jersey
Did you or a loved one sustain serious injuries due to a motorcycle accident in New Jersey? Don’t let the medical bills pile up while you wait for the negligent party or their insurance company to do the right thing. Right now, you need an aggressive personal injury attorney on your side, fighting to get you the compensation you need, want, and deserve. The skilled attorneys at Lombardi and Lombardi, P.A. represent clients injured because of motorcycle accidents in Woodbridge, Old Bridge, Piscataway, New Brunswick, and throughout New Jersey. Call 732-564-7165 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free consultation about your case. We have an office conveniently located at 1862 Oak Tree Road, Edison, NJ 08820, as well as offices in Edison, Brick, Freehold, and Point Pleasant Beach.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.