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Common Causes of Motorcycle Accident Injuries

There is no denying the appeal of motorcycles. For many people, they represent freedom and adventure. But riding motorcycle comes with great risks. They’re less stable than four-wheeled vehicles and they provide less protection in an accident. This means not only that they are more prone to crashes but also that more serious injuries tend to befall their riders.

Speeding Motorcycle Accident RiskThere are multiple factors that can lead to a motorcycle accident, but they fall into certain major categories. According to a recent National Highway Traffic Safety Administration study, the following are the most common causes of motorcycle accident injuries:

  • Driver inattention — By far the most frequent cause of motorcycle accidents is lack of attention by drivers of other vehicles. Night riding can be especially dangerous, since oncoming drivers seeing only a single headlight may recognize a motorcycle is near them.
  • Left turns — About 40 percent of motorcycle accidents occur in left-turn scenarios. A motorcyclist may be going through an intersection when a car coming from the opposite direction turns left into its path. Or a car making a left turn may fail to notice a motorcycle passing on the left. In either case, the motorcycle’s smaller size makes it less visible.
  • Speeding — Driving at high speeds accounts for a third of all motorcycle accidents. Speeding increases the risk of a rider losing control. In high-speed accidents, riders are often thrown from their bikes, land on hard surfaces and/or are hit by oncoming traffic.
  • Impaired driving — Alcohol and/or drug impairment is involved in about a third of all motorcycle crashes in New Jersey. Even moderate alcohol consumption or drug use can affect driving judgment as well as the ability to stop quickly or to steer clear of road hazards.
  • Improper passing and lane usage — Although motorcycles are able to navigate smaller spaces, accidents often result from using road shoulders to pass other vehicles as well as from “lane splitting,” which means riding between two lanes of vehicle traffic. In both cases, a motorcycle may side-swipe or be side-swiped or knocked over by another vehicle.

Due to motorcycle riders’ lack of protective shielding, almost any accident can result in serious or fatal injuries. Some of the most common include head and neck injuries, spinal damage, broken bones, leg and foot injuries, burns and skins abrasions. The worst accidents can result in paralysis and even death.

Pursuing a motorcycle accident injury lawsuit and recovering adequate financial compensation can be a difficult process. Insurance companies and their legal counsel often take the position that motorcyclists are principally to blame for accidents, and even juries may harbor anti-biker biases. If you’re hurt in such an accident, building a strong case for damages takes skill, hard work and perseverance.

The law firm of Kevin T. Kutyla, Esq. in Succasunna provides effective representation in motorcycle injury cases for clients in Morris County, Sussex County and throughout New Jersey. Call 862-354-8931 or contact me online to schedule a free consultation.