Motorcycle Accident Injuries
There are many types of injuries that can occur during a motorcycle accident. Leg, knee, and foot trauma are the most common injuries reported, while head or brain injuries are the most fatal. Additionally, there is high risk from burns from fuel leaks and other hazardous materials. It is often the rider who suffers the most painful injuries.
Five common causes of motorcycle accidents:
Often, a motorcyclist’s driving isn’t the cause of an accident. This list outlines the most common factors that can contribute to a motorcycle accident.
- Other Drivers – Defensive driving is a must for a motorcyclist. Don’t assume that the other drivers on the road see you or will give you the right-of-way. One of the most common causes of bike accidents is when another vehicle turns left, crossing into the path of an oncoming motorcycle.
- Dangerous or Hazardous Surfaces – Weather conditions like ice or rain as well as uneven roads pose potential dangers.
- Flying Insects or Debris – Could cause loss of control or eye injury.
- Other Moving Objects – Aside from fellow motorists, motorcyclists must be aware of anything that might cross their path, including pedestrians and animals.
- Overcorrection – Not only does a motorcyclist have to watch the other vehicles on the road but also they must make sure they do not make matters worse by overreacting to potential dangers.
Motorcycle Accident Injuries
Motorcyclists in the Columbia, Greenville, Spartanburg, and surrounding areas must obey the rules of the roads in South Carolina, but that alone will not prevent them from getting into a motorcycle accident. Riding a motorcycle takes skill, practice, and knowledge. Practicing the following safety tips will help ensure that motorcyclists get to their destination safely.
- Wear Protective/Safety Gear
- Be Aware of Your Surroundings
- Instruct Passengers On How to Ride Safely
- Use Staggered Formation When Riding In Groups
- Drive Defensively
One of the most important and easy tips for riding a motorcycle safely is to wear a helmet. South Carolina law only requires riders under 21 years of age to wear helmets. Since most fatalities in bike accidents are due to head injuries, it is advisable to wear a helmet every time you ride.
Liability in a Motorcycle Accident
Most other kinds of automobile accidents, liability in a motorcycle accident is determined by carelessness. The party that is shown to be the most careless is liable to pay for any damages incurred in the accident. When it comes to motorcycle accidents, however, favor almost always leans towards the motorcyclist. The inherent nature of riding a motorcycle tends to make people more cautious while it’s easier to become distracted when driving a car or truck.
It’s important to note, however, that a motorcyclist is not immune from liability. Motorcyclists can still be careless like when they speed through a light or lane split in an area where it’s clearly too congested. Even forcing another car off the road can end up with the motorcyclist having to pay for the injured party’s recovery costs.
No Contact Accidents
When you’re behind the wheel of a motorcycle, you’re more prone to no contact accidents simply due to your smaller size compared to a regular sized car. Some may think that the lack of a physical collision is enough to alleviate anyone but the motorcyclist of liability during a crash, but that’s not the case.
Imagine a car suddenly veers into your lane without signaling or showing any sign it was going to do so. You swerve to avoid hitting the car and end up crashed in a ditch. The car didn’t touch you, but the driver’s careless behavior still directly caused the accident and is liable for the accident.
Lane splitting is a popular technique many motorcyclists adopt because it grants them means to bypass traffic. It involves the motorcyclist driving in between lanes and in between cars to get where they’re going. While the motorcycle’s small size makes it possible, it’s generally not a good idea due to the small area to maneuver in case something goes wrong.
Remember, lane splitting laws vary from state to state, so be careful if you do try this risky maneuver. In South Carolina, lane splitting is completely prohibited as motorcycles are given the same privileges and rules as a regular size car. That means you must stay in the middle of your lane when riding.
Making Your Case
If you pursue a negligence claim against someone for your motorcycle accident, there are four primary elements of your case you need to consider. First, you have to demonstrate that the law required the defendant to be reasonably careful leading up to your accident in the situation that occurred. Next, you have to show how the defendant violated that law.
After you’ve demonstrated the defendant’s negligence, it’s up to you to show how their negligence caused your injuries. Finally, you have to prove that due to your injuries, you’ve suffered losses. These losses can adopt a variety of different forms whether it’s calculable damages like medical and repair costs or incalculable damages like emotional tolls and pain and suffering. This is a lot to keep up with on your own which is why you need an experienced motorcycle accident attorney at your side every step of the way.
Why You Need a South Carolina Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Harris and Graves is one of the premier personal injury law firms in South Carolina with offices in Greenville, Columbia, Spartanburg, Rock Hill and Florence. Our law firm has been serving South Carolina since 1977 and specializes in practice areas such as auto accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents and workers compensation. To schedule a consultation with one of our practicing attorneys, please give us a call at 877-958-8038 or complete our inquiry contact form. By using the services of a personal injury lawyer or motorcycle accident lawyer, you are ensuring that your case is fully investigated. They will help make sense of your motorcycle insurance and maximize your claim.