Motorcycle Accidents & Injuries
Motorcycle Accidents and Insurance Coverage
As most motorcycle accidents result in permanent injury, the damages usually exceed the insurance coverage of both the defendant and plaintiff motorcycle rider. In nearly every motorcycle accident, there will be some required medical treatment, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering. There may be other damages depending on the case, such as loss of quality of life, and even wrongful death.
Ride to Live But Also Live to Ride Again
Whenever you ride, there are steps you can take to help avoid an accident. After all, motorcycles are just two wheels without airbags, safety belts, or any other protection. Furthermore, a single mistake can cost you dearly. However, here are some precautions we recommend to help improve your chances to make it back home. That’s really all we care about. While we are motorcycle accident attorneys, we sincerely hope you never need our services.
Motorcycle Accident Prevention
Before you ride, whether for the first time or periodically, take a motorcycle certification course. Because it will refresh safe driving practices, most insurance companies give discounted rates for this training and education. Also, many motorcycle dealers offer such training or can direct you towards the best courses and instructors. And this time, everything you learn in the classroom will help you in real life.
Defensive Driving Methods:
ALWAYS. With newer bikes, the headlights are automatic. Regardless of the motorcycle you own, keep your lights on so that other drivers can see you. It actually helps, even in bright sunlight.
ALWAYS. Use turn signals every time, but turn them “off” when done. Otherwise, other drivers may assume you are changing lanes or turning and then “cut you off” or pull out in front of you unexpectedly. Also, consider corresponding “hand signals” just to make sure everyone knows your intentions.
ALWAYS. Be aware of everything on the road. Know where other drivers are at all times. Constantly check your mirrors and track vehicles behind you. Look ahead, far ahead, and anticipate potential hazards. And always have an “escape” plan just in case someone does come into your lane or pull out in front of you. Absolutely keep your distance from other drivers and assume the other car does not see you.
ONLY IF YOU MUST. Let’s be honest. It’s more fun to ride alone, and passengers can make it harder to be safe. The extra weight affects the handling of the bike, and it takes longer to stop. And, they always want to “help drive.” Instead, have passengers hold onto your waist or hips, have them lean forward when starting or accelerating, have them lean back when braking.
Most importantly, tell passengers not to “lean” unless you do. The shift in weight can cause steering problems and loss of control. However, when turning or going around a corner, they should absolutely “mirror” your body dynamics and look over your shoulder in the direction of the turn. In this way, “two become one” and you both get to enjoy the ride safely.
Underinsured and Uninsured Insurance on Your Motorcycle
While no one expects to get injured, it will happen for some unlucky riders. As motorcycle accident attorneys, we push riders to get plenty of insurance. In addition to liability, you also need uninsured motorist (UM) and underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage. Why? Because motorcycle accidents are almost always serious and life-threatening. Talk to your insurance agent about coverage. For more information and a video on the importance of carrying adequate UM and UIM coverage click here.