Irvine Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Orange County is the ideal place to own a motorcycle; we have 278 days of sunshine per year and an average temperature of 70 degrees. Unfortunately, it is also a place where accidents are common.
According to the NHTSA, 4,957 motorcyclists were killed in 2012, which is a 7% increase from 2011. Older riders seem to be most at risk; of these fatalities, over 55% of them happened in the 40 and over age group. Motorcyclists are extremely vulnerable to serious injury in an accident. According to the Insurance Information Institute, riders were 26 more times likely to die in a crash compared to their passenger vehicle counterparts.
Although California has a helmet law, it cannot completely prevent other serious injuries from occurring to motorcyclists. Unlike in a car, there is no barrier besides a helmet and protective clothing between a rider and the road. Spinal cord injuries, head injuries, burns, whiplash, internal bleeding, and organ damage are just several of the many injuries that can occur in a motorcycle accident.
Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
According to the NHTSA, head-on collisions with a passenger vehicle represent the majority of all fatal motorcycle accidents. Vehicle drivers may not be able to easily see cyclists, as they are much smaller than a car, resulting in incidents where the driver is at fault.
Another major cause of motorcycle accidents is when a vehicle makes a left hand turn in an uncontrolled intersection. A motorcycle will be coming straight through the intersection from the opposite direction as the car pulls in front of it, causing the motorcycle to collide with the front or side of the vehicle.
Other causes of motorcycle accidents are due to poor road conditions or involve the rider either speeding or being intoxicated. These accidents are typically single vehicle crashes with the motorcycle going off the road or sliding onto its side. Any injury sustained in a motorcycle accident can result in physical and emotional trauma, lost wages, and other financial stress. It is imperative that those involved in an accident seek out a motorcycle accident lawyer to ease these damages.
Preventing Motorcycle Accidents
The main way to prevent motorcycle collisions is to remain cognizant of your surroundings while driving or riding. Automobile drivers should double check mirrors and blind spots before changing lanes. In California, motorcyclists are allowed to pass between lanes. It is therefore essential that drivers keep a constant watch on their mirrors to see if a cyclist is coming up between them and another car.
Motorcyclists should also take extra care to be aware of their surroundings. They should keep in mind that it may not be easy for drivers to see them and ensure they are visible before they pass a car. If there are inclement weather conditions, motorcyclists may want to stay home or take a different vehicle.
Riders should always wear a helmet, and California law requires them to do so. While this may not prevent accidents, it is a precautionary measure that may lessen the severity of injuries. Motorcyclists should also wear other protective gear, such as armored jackets, a kidney belt, and a chest protector. According to the NHTSA, more intoxicated motorcycle riders are involved in fatal crashes than other drivers. Riders should never drive while intoxicated, and drivers should take care to do the same.
Costa Mesa | Irvine | Mission Viejo
While riding a motorcycle may represent freedom to some, it comes with the risk of injury. At Mann & Elias, we encourage riders or drivers to contact us if they have been in a motorcycle-related accident. Physical, emotional, and financial burdens can last a lifetime if untreated; we will be by your side through any litigation process and ensure you get the care you need.