Contact Us for a Free Consultation
I love riding my Harley Davidson Deluxe. Although the one in this picture was a rental I rode while touring Aruba, there is no greater feeling than riding a Harley out on the open road.
If you’re a motorcycle rider who lives in the Pasadena or Los Angeles area, you already know that driving through L.A. traffic is a risk. But we choose that risk for many reasons, including the love we have for our bikes.
Our offices take pride in representing motorcycle riders just like you. We understand that getting injured in a motorcycle accident can be distressing. Our law offices have handled many motorcycle accident cases throughout our 30 years of legal practice with great results.
We can have your motorcycle repaired and obtain monetary damages for medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, and non-economic damages like loss of enjoyment of life, pain, suffering, disfigurement, grief, and anxiety.
There are many misconceptions about motorcycle accidents and motorcycle riders in general. Contrary to popular belief, most motorcycle accidents are not caused by high speed. Also, most motorcycle riders are not reckless. We know and understand the risks that come with riding our bikes. This is why we take precautions like wearing helmets and other protective gear. But despite doing all this, we are still at higher risk of being involved in a serious accident.
It is estimated that 80% of other drivers cause motorcycle accidents as a result of pure negligence. Investigating a motorcycle accident is a complex process, and you need experience you can trust on your side.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
Unsafe Lane Changes
There is a higher chance of a collision when another driver switches lanes without signaling or checking his or her blind spot. Due to the size difference between a motorcycle and four-wheeled vehicle, it’s easy to understand how a collision can occur if you happen to be in a driver’s blind spot.
Parked Drivers or Passengers Opening their Doors
Drivers and passengers can be oblivious to cyclists and motorcycle riders when exiting their vehicles. Not checking behind them before opening the doors poses a hazard for anyone riding along the way.
The primary cause of most road accidents is high speed. Regardless of the type of vehicle, if you’re speeding it becomes much more difficult to spot other drivers and pedestrians in your surroundings. Also, driving at a higher rate of speed requires greater stopping distance.
Driving Under the Influence
Alcohol and drugs impair one’s ability to react and make decisions. Drivers under the influence of alcohol or drugs are more likely to cause collisions with other drivers.
Lane splitting is the act of driving between two lanes of traffic moving in the same direction. Although it’s legal in the state of California, it’s still a dangerous maneuver.
When driving, some motorists are unaware of how closely other vehicles are following. Sudden braking can cause rear-end collisions.
The more experience you have at doing something, the better you become at that activity. Driving is no exception. Inexperienced drivers are much more likely to make mistakes and cause accidents. This is why insurance companies take driving experience into account when determining policy premiums.
Bad Road Conditions
Uneven roads, potholes, un-kept or missing road signals, and other non-vehicle related road hazards put motorcycle riders at risk.
Motorcycle manufacturers are mandated to perform recalls for any faulty products. Failure to do so puts lives at risk. If your accident was the result of a defective motorcycle, you may have a strong case against the manufacturer.
Injuries from Motorcycle Accidents
Although some riders can walk off an accident scene with no injuries, others may not know that they’ve sustained a serious or even a life-threatening injury. Head injuries, soft tissue damage, or hairline fractures can be difficult to detect immediately. Your body is still in shock, and you may be unaware of the full extent of your injuries. It’s always a good idea to seek medical attention as soon as possible.
Below are some of the most common motorcycle accident injuries
Traumatic Brain Injury
The severity of a brain injury can vary, but some can affect you for the rest of your life. Brain injuries can affect your ability to control bodily functions, movement of your limbs, and they can trigger mood disorders including Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
Spinal cord injuries can leave a person immobile and bed-ridden for an extended period of time. Complications from this can result in bedsores, breathing problems, paralysis, and other mobility issues.
Broken bones are a common form of injury for motorcycle riders because of the powerful impact that they sustain when colliding against the ground or another object. Severe injuries can also require amputations.
Soft Tissue Damage
Whiplash is one of the most common injuries for motorcycle and auto accidents. Damaged tendons or ligaments in your body can result in less mobility and severe and chronic pain.
Road rash injuries can vary by severity. In more extreme cases, it can result in third-degree burns.
California Motorcycle Laws
Motorcycle laws vary state by state. California has some of the strictest laws in the country. If you ride a motorcycle, you should become familiar with our state’s motorcycle laws including the following:
Lane Splitting is Legal in California
California is one of the few states that allows lane splitting. Lane splitting means moving between two lanes of traffic traveling in the same direction.
All motorcycle riders, regardless of age, are required by law to wear a helmet.
Motorcycles produced after 1978 must be equipped with daytime headlights
All motorcycles produced after 1978 must be outfitted with daytime headlights, and you must have them on during daytime hours.
Motorcyclists are required to carry the following insurance policies
- Injury/Death Coverage for a minimum of $15,000 for one person
- Injury/Death Coverage for a minimum of $30,000 for more than one person
- Property Damage Coverage for a minimum of $5,000
- The statute of limitations for the filing of a motorcycle accident lawsuit is two years from the date of the accident.
How a Motorcycle Accident Attorney can Help
Our law offices are aware that no matter how careful you are, you’re not always 100% safe from accidents. You can take all the necessary precautions to protect yourself, but that doesn’t mean that others will do the same. Unfortunately, sharing the road also means sharing it with negligent, irresponsible, intoxicated, and inexperienced drivers.
Insurance companies will not always have your best interests in mind. Their main priority is to try and save themselves as much money as possible by paying the minimum for your claim including your property damage and medical bills (this is assuming that they’ve taken responsibility in the first place).
If you think hiring a motorcycle accident attorney is expensive, think again. Many victims have tried to negotiate settlements on their own without understanding the full value of their cases. Negotiating on your own is not only more frustrating, but it can also end up costing you more money.
You need an aggressive and experienced personal injury attorney who can defend your rights and get you the settlement that you deserve.
Contact us today for a free and confidential consultation.