Motorcycle Accidents: Causes and Liability

California Motorcycle Accidents

In the event of an accident, motorcyclists face a far higher risk of serious injury or death than other motorists. A motorcycle lacks the crashworthiness and occupant protection characteristics of an automobile. For example, an automobile has door beams, a roof, airbags, and seat belts that protect driver and passengers. If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, or if you have lost a loved one in a fatal mishap, contact the personal injury attorneys at class=”nap-item nap-item–name”>Freeman & Freeman, LLP. Our experienced motorcycle accident specialists will investigate your case and take all possible means to recover just compensation for your injuries.

Causes Of Motorcycle Accidents

Most motorcycle accidents are caused by the following:

  • speeding
  • traveling in an automobile’s blind spot
  • driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • driver fatigue
  • inclement weather
  • bad road conditions (debris, potholes, loose gravel, uneven pavement, slippery surfaces)
  • driver inattentiveness
  • malfunctioning or defective motorcycle parts
  • negligence of other drivers

Common Injuries In Motorcycle Accident

In general, the injuries a motorcyclist receives in an accident are much more severe than those from accidents involving just automobiles. More than 80 percent of all reported motorcycle accidents result in serious injury or death. Insurance statistics show that 25 percent of motorcycle claimants have multiple injuries and have longer rehabilitation periods. Eighteen percent suffer head injuries resulting in permanent disability, while 10 percent have spine injuries with paraplegia or quadriplegia. Motorcycle accidents usually result in more injuries because:

  • the motorcycle provides no injury protection to the rider
  • in most cases the rider is ejected from the motorcycle, striking other objects and the ground during the crash
  • motorcyclists have no protection other than a helmet and clothing to shield them from impact

The most common injuries associated with motorcycle accidents include:

  • Head injury
  • Brain injury
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Broken limbs
  • Broken hips
  • Lacerations
  • Burns
  • Joint dislocation
  • Abrasions or “road rash”
  • Amputation

Who Is Liable For A Motorcyclist’s Injuries?

Responsibility for the damages suffered in a motorcycle accident depends upon the circumstances. If the accident is caused by the negligent or reckless action of another motorist, they may be liable for resulting injuries. If the accident was caused by a defective part of the motorcycle or other vehicle involved, the manufacturer may be liable. A city, county, state, or federal governmental entity may be liable if a dangerous road condition is found to be the cause of a motorcycle accident. A third party may also have some responsibility under certain circumstances. For example, if a tavern owner knowingly serves alcohol to an intoxicated patron who later causes an accident, the owner may be liable.

Compassionate Legal Assistance

If you or a loved one has been involved in a motorcycle accident that has caused serious injury or death, you need expert legal counsel to help you through the complexities of a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. Call Freeman & Freeman, LLP today at 818-574-5865 or fill out our online contact form for a free initial consultation. The attorneys at Freeman & Freeman, LLP have the skill and experience to aggressively protect your rights and help you recover the compensation you deserve.

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