MOTORCYCLES THE RISKS
May 5, 2018
The purchase of a new motorcycle can be a joyful event. Driving a motorcycle is one of life’s greatest pleasures: the wind in your hair as you tear down the road, the freedom of knowing you can ride wherever you want. Last year alone, close to ten thousand motorcycles were sold in the United States. Nine percent of the American population owns a motorcycle, with over four million motorcycles registered in the United States. Motorcycle safety then is a pressing concern.
MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENTS: INJURIES AND COURSES OF ACTION
If they do not result in death, motorc ycle accidents can permanently injure people. Though one can take certain safety measures, like wearing a helmet or donning brightly colored clothing, it is often the case that serious injuries are sustained in motorcycle accidents. Ninety-eight percent of multiple vehicle accidents resulted in injury to the motorcyclist. Some of the most common injuries involve broken or fractured joints (shoulders, elbows, knees, wrists and hips) and pelvic and shoulder injuries. Soft tissue damage is also quite common. In a motorcycle accident, the victim’s body often slides across a surface at high speed, resulting in road rash — a skin and bone injury caused by abrasion. Biker’s arm is another common and often permanent injury from motorcycle accidents. Because many accidents injure the nerves of the upper arm, victims of motorcycle accidents can be permanently paralyzed. Along with these painful injuries, motorcycle accidents often result in facial disfigurement. In fact, thirty-five percent of accidents result in major damage to the chin-bar area.
More often than not, injuries from a motorcycle accident are serious, even life-threatening. Motorcycle accidents are the leading cause of brain damage. One out of every five motorcycle accidents result in neck or head injuries. Concussions, spinal, nervous system and brain damage occur frequently in motorcycle accidents. And the type of head injuries sustained in motorcycle accidents frequently damage the parts of the brain responsible for speech and higher functions, leaving the injured motorcyclist incapacitated for life and saddled with expensive medical bills for ongoing treatment. Brain injuries can even result in schizophrenia and coma.
What should you do if you or a loved one is involved in a motorcycle accident? Make sure you follow these important rules:
- File a police report.
- If you are able to, check for injuries. Even if you feel fine, make sure to seek medical attention after the police report is filed.
- Remain at the scene of the accident so the other driver’s word will not be the foundation of the police report.
- Exchange information with the other motorists involved in the accident. Exchange driver’s licenses and vehicle registration information. Make sure to write down the following information: name, address, telephone number, date of birth, driver’s license number and expiration date, written description of the other vehicle (make, model, license plate number, expiration date and vehicle identification number), and the other motorist’s insurance company and contact information.
- If possible, take as many pictures as you can of the crash scene. These will come in useful when settling a claim.
MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENTS: ARIZONA
Close to two thousand motorcycle riders sustained severe injuries. In fact, there has been an increase in motorcycle accidents in Arizona the past few years. Statewide, the amount of motorcycle accidents and motorcycle-related deaths more than doubled between 1997 and 2005, according to the National Center for Statistics and Analysis of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. In the city of Tucson alone, twenty-one percent of all traffic deaths were motorcycle-related accidents. Experts agree that these numbers will only increase because of increases in motorcycle registrations. In Arizona, motorcycle registrations climbed from 77,000 in 2001 to 125,000 in 2006, an increase of a little less than fifty percent.
Many of these new riders are baby boomers–people in their fifties and sixties. The average age of motorcyclists rose to 41, from 38 just five years earlier. For riders over fifty, motorcycle fatalities have soared 400 percent.
THE IMPORTANCE OF LEGAL ADVICE WHEN INVOLVED IN A MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT
Sometimes it is not possible to take photographs of an accident scene, or to record all the details of an accident, because of severe injuries. When that is the case, and even if that is not the case, the services of a motorcycle accident attorney are required. A motorcycle attorney can help you navigate the often complex process of filing a lawsuit — they are familiar with traffic laws and local regulations that may have been violated. In other words, a motorcycle accident attorney can help ensure that you receive the settlement you deserve.
Motorcycle accidents are terrible events. They can result in life-altering injuries and often death. Should you find yourself a victim of a motorcycle accident, seek the help of a motorcycle attorney to ensure you get the legal justice you deserve.
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