Motorcycle accidents can happen anytime—to anyone.
They are often extremely traumatic, as motorcycle riders are exposed to greater danger than drivers in cars because they lack the protection that is offered by a car’s steel casing.
COMMON CAUSES OF MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENTS:
- LACK OF WEATHER PROTECTION
Motorcyclists do not have any weather protection. This means that they can be dragged about and thrown off their motorcycles when riding through heavy rain, sleet, or snow.
- TRAFFIC SIGNALS
Motorcycles are smaller than other vehicles and cannot stop quickly enough at traffic lights to prevent collisions with other vehicles such as trucks, cars, or even buses. The faster a vehicle goes, the harder it is to come to an abrupt stop—which makes collisions with larger vehicles more dangerous for motorcycles.
- DIFFERENCES IN REQUIRED LICENSES
Most provinces have different licenses for motorcycle riders compared to driver’s licenses. Motorcycle license holders need to know the basic rules of the road so that they can operate their motorcycles safely—while keeping themselves, other motorists, pedestrians, and bikers safe at all times. At the same time, they might not have as clear of an understanding of the rules and regulations which are in place for other drivers on the road. This can ultimately lead to unavoidable accidents.
- OBSCURED VIEWPOINTS WHILE RIDING
Weather conditions, such as heavy rain or snow, or darkness, might obstruct your view when riding a motorcycle. This makes collisions more likely to occur for motorcyclists. Therefore, it is crucial for riders to always note potential dangers in their surroundings and take necessary steps such as slowing down to prevent collisions.
- DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF ALCOHOL OR DRUGS
Some motorcyclists might be drinking prior to riding their motorcycles. This can create severe problems, like loss of coordination, impaired judgment, and altered vision. When drinking alcohol is combined with driving a motorbike, it can pose dangers for all drivers on the road.
- LACK OF SAFETY GEAR
Proper safety gear, such as gloves, boots, jackets, shades, and helmets are essential when operating a motorcycle. Riding without any protective gear is more likely to result in injuries—which could affect your ability to make claims for compensation from insurance companies.
PREVENTION IS BETTER THAN CURE
You may well be wanting to know how you can prevent motorcycle accidents from occurring because so many factors contribute to their occurrence.
Keep safe by following these practical tips:
- PRACTICE SAFE RIDING HABITS
It’s always a good idea to adopt safe riding practices like following traffic laws and keeping your eyes on the road. Avoid using your cell phone while riding because simply gazing at it for a few seconds can result in an accident.
- VEHICLE FAMILIARITY
Riding a motorcycle does not necessarily mean that you have mastered it. As a matter of fact, most motorcycle accidents stem from people trying to learn how to ride their two-wheeled vehicle too hastily. Take the time to get familiar with your motorbike before going out on the road.
- MOTORCYCLE CONDITION
It would help if you always were extra careful when riding your motorcycle—as most avoidable accidents happen because of individuals’ failure to ensure that their bike is functioning properly. It is essential to check whether or not your vehicle has any issues which could cause it to malfunction during a ride. Bikers should also learn how to fix their motorcycles themselves in case they break down during their time on the road.
- SAFE DISTANCE FROM AGGRESSIVE DRIVERS
Motorcycle riders often face aggressive drivers who try to intimidate them into speeding up or slowing down. As a result, motorcyclists are often put in danger. As a motorcycle operator, so you should avoid such drivers by keeping a safe space from other vehicles on the road at all times.
- CONTROL ON THE ROAD
When driving through rough patches on the road, some motorists become intimidated by large vehicles. It may cause them to react in ways that are harmful to others who are sharing the road.
- STAY ALERT AT ALL TIMES
Motorcycle riders have to be extra careful when they are on the road—as it takes a lot of focus and awareness to ride safely without being involved in an accident. Keep your eyes open for potential hazards while riding, and avoid distractions like listening to loud music or talking on your cell phone so you are aware of what is happening around you at all times.
IN THE EVENT OF A MOTOR VEHICLE INCIDENT:
If you suspect that you were involved in a motor vehicle accident due to the actions or negligence of another person, do not hesitate to contact a motorcycle lawyer who will assist you in filing a claim against those responsible for your injuries.
Accident lawyers are fundamental in aiding you with the aftermath of an accident. They can help you to exercise your rights as a victim. Your lawyer will prove that the negligence of the other party caused the incident and the injuries that you sustained.
THE QUALITIES OF A GREAT LEGAL REPRESENTATIVE
So, what should you look for in a motorcycle attorney? How will you know that he or she will be suitable for the job?
The following are some qualities that a motorcycle attorney should possess:
- EXTENSIVE EXPERTISE AND EXPERIENCE
Having an experienced motorbike accident lawyer who has dealt with cases of a similar nature on your side is substantial. He or she should be an expert in this specific area of the law. His or her experience and knowledge will determine your chances of winning your case.
- MAJOR MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT LAW FIRM
While finding a good solo practitioner might seem like the best bet initially, you should also consider hiring a professional from an established law firm. This being said, some major motorcycle accident law firms may not be as efficient as you believe. Such counselor-at-law are frequently weighed down by a mountain of work and minor matters, stifling their productivity.
Either way, ensure that your motorcycle accident lawyer is someone who has been in the business for a long time. This is because it would mean that they possess more experience and, therefore, be considered far better when providing legal aid.
The lawyer you hire should have an established reputation within the community and their field of practice. Personal injury cases involving motorcyclists tend to be complicated cases to handle, thus, it is critical that your lawyer has the expertise required to take on such an endevor.
Motorcycle accident lawyers need to have a flexible schedule that will accommodate all your appointments without any issues. If the attorneys are hard to reach or avoid your phone calls, this is a red flag. It could mean they might not attend all meetings and conferences—which can be distressing for victims.
- COMMUNICATION SKILLS
An attorney should be able to explain the case in a way that victims can understand. They should provide their clients with all the information that they require, without making them feel intimidated or lost. They must also be able to express themselves clearly on behalf of the client.
- NEGOTIATION SKILLS
The personal injury lawyer that you hire should have the ability and skills necessary to negotiate with insurers. This will free you from the worry of being taken advantage by the at-fault party’s insurer.
- ADAMANT ADVOCACY
Only experienced attorneys have the ability and expertise required to adamantly advocate for their clients. Your attorney will work towards gaining restitution from insurance firms by negotiating with them or filing claims when necessary. He or she will also possess the resources required to take these cases to court if necessary, such that their clients would not have to suffer any financial losses in addition to their physical pain and mental stress that they are currently experiencing.
- REASONABLE FEES
Remember that injury attorneys work for you. They should provide you with proper legal counsel, and they should be capable of providing all the information that you require about their services, without keeping anything hidden. They must also know how to talk to clients respectfully, to ensure that there is no room for confusion or miscommunication.
In addition, it is worth noting that legal representatives for motorcycle accidents tend to be quite expensive. Hence, it is important to make sure that you find out how much they would charge for their services.
If you decide to file a claim without an attorney, then your insurance provider might not honor your claim. They might even raise your rates because they suspect that you were irresponsible. Moreover, insurance companies will often try to force victims into accepting low settlement offers because they know that most claimants who fail to hire lawyers cannot go to court. Keep in mind that only professional legal assistance can ensure that victims receive total and fair compensation for their injuries.
WHAT TYPES OF COMPENSATION IS AVAILABLE?
Most motorcycle accident victims often receive compensation for their medical bills. Keep in mind that depending on the severity of your injuries, you may be eligible for other types of compensation as well.
- LOST WAGES
Compensation for lost wages refers to claims which address any income that you may have lost after getting injured in an accident because you could not go back to work right away or at all. If the amount exceeds the limits imposed by your insurance provider, you will need additional coverage to receive the total amount you are hoping for.
- SUFFERING AND PAIN
Refers to the physical, mental, and emotional anguish you experienced as a result of your injuries.
You are entitled to compensation if the disability that you are experiencing as a result of the accident lasts more than six months, or is permanent.
- MEDICAL TREATMENT COSTS
All medical treatment costs (past and future) can be reimbursed as they are directly related to your injuries. Realize that different types of treatment may necessitate varying levels of coverage, so it is best to seek the advice of legal counsel before deciding on any particular type of coverage.
- PROPERTY DAMAGE
A claim can also be made, such that you are compensated for any damage that has been done to your property. Thus, you should ask an attorney about your options, as such a claim can help offset the total amount you are required to pay back if your claim is denied or falls short.
- WRONGFUL DEATH
If a loved one loses his or her life in a vehicular accident which was caused by another individual’s negligence, you can file a wrongful death claim against the liable party. You should also note that you can seek compensation for loss of companionship and loss of financial support from your loved one.
Filing a claim and receiving compensation for personal injuries or property damage sustained in motorcycle accidents requires the advice of a motorcycle accident attorney at your disposal. Thus, it is imperative that you do your research before hiring the right lawyer to represent you and your case.