Riding a motorcycle is a popular mode of transportation for many throughout Massachusetts. Whether you ride to relax or use your motorcycle to commute to work, you deserve to arrive safely at your destination. When the careless actions of another driver result in devastating injuries for you, it can change your life forever. If you experienced serious injuries from a motorcycle accident due to no fault of your own, you may want to consider discussing your case with a motorcycle accident attorney.
Motorcycle Accidents: How and Why They Occur
All licensed drivers must share the road. While motorcycles are smaller than passenger vehicles and commercial trucks, they have the same rights to the road. Too many motorcycle accidents occur because another driver failed to see the motorcycle.
According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), the failure to see motorcycles can result in accidents in the following ways:
- Forty-two percent of motorcycle crashes involve a driver turning left in front of a motorcyclist who was driving straight, passing, or overtaking a vehicle.
- Nearly 40 percent of a passenger vehicle has blind spots, making it difficult to see a motorcycle without properly adjusted mirrors.
- The narrow profile of a motorcycle makes it difficult to see due to potential visual blockers, like other cars.
- The narrow profile of a motorcycle also makes it difficult to properly judge its speed as it approaches an intersection.
In addition to motorists not watching for motorcycles, some drivers engage in dangerous behaviors that place motorcyclists—and other drivers—at risk for serious injury. Examples of the types of behaviors that may make them liable for your injuries include:
- Distracted driving
- Drunk driving
- Drowsy driving
- Aggressive driving/road rage
These are just a few examples of the types of behaviors drivers perform every day on city streets and highways. While you can never predict what another driver may do, you can take action when their reckless behavior leaves you with serious injuries.
If you experience life-changing injuries while riding your motorcycle and the accident was not your fault, consider legal action. A personal injury lawsuit is your best option for pursuing compensation for your damages. While each case is different, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Damages may also include property damage for the loss of your motorcycle.
Common Types of Motorcycle Injuries
The lack of protection a motorcycle provides places operators and passengers at risk for serious harm. While Massachusetts has strict helmet laws, a head or neck injury remains nonetheless a real possibility.
The propensity for a crash to throw a rider, the lack of seatbelts and airbags, along with the instability of a two-wheeled vehicle, can result in the following injuries:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injury
- Broken Bones
- Road rash/abrasions
The NHTSA lists the top nonfatal motorcycle injuries by primary body part as:
- 30 percent of injuries are to the leg and foot.
- 22 percent of injuries are to the head and neck.
- 20 percent of injuries involve the upper trunk.
- 18 percent involve the arm and head.
The costs associated with a severe motorcycle injury can continue throughout your lifetime. Depending upon the severity of your injury, you may require 24-hour care, ongoing therapies, and prescription medications.
Your injuries were not your fault. A motorcycle accident lawyer can help you through this difficult time by holding the responsible party accountable for their actions. No one should suffer physical, financial, or emotional stress due to the negligence of another driver.
Wrongful Death Claims
The NHTSA reports that per mile traveled, motorcyclist fatalities occur nearly 27 times more frequently than car fatalities. Sadly, not everyone survives a motorcycle accident. If you lost a close loved one in a motorcycle crash that was no fault of their own, consider contacting an attorney.
You may qualify to file a wrongful death claim. While no amount of money can replace your loved one, it can relieve your financial stress. The types of damages typically sought in a wrongful death claim include the victim’s final medical expenses, along with burial and funeral costs and other expenses.
Wrongful death cases are often quite complex and require the skills of an experienced motorcycle accident attorney. Discuss your case with one as soon as possible.
How a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Can Help You
Insurance companies like to settle cases quickly and for the least amount possible. It is important that you not speak with them but secure legal representation instead. While their initial offer may seem like a large sum of money, chances are it isn’t enough to cover your future medical care.
Should you accept and sign a settlement offer, you are generally not allowed to pursue civil action later if your condition worsens. Don’t fall for their high-pressure tactics and protect your best interests by contacting a motorcycle accident attorney.
While contacting an attorney might be the furthest thing from your mind after an accident, it is important to consider. The statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit in Massachusetts—or wrongful death lawsuit—is three years. This may seem like a long time, however, it can pass quickly when you are dealing with your injuries or grieving the loss of a close loved one.
If you miss the deadline for filing your case, the opportunity is lost forever. Don’t let this happen to you. The sooner a motorcycle accident attorney reviews your case, the sooner they can determine the best course of action for you.
Riding a motorcycle is a great way to experience Massachusetts and to enjoy the openness of the road. No one should experience life-changing injuries because another driver failed to share the road or chose to drink and drive.
You can ride defensively and still experience a serious motorcycle accident. If the reckless actions of another driver resulted in serious injuries for you, fight for justice. Most motorcycle accident attorneys offer free case evaluations, leaving you nothing to lose by reaching out to one today.