There are many reasons people—men and women alike—choose to ride motorcycles. Some riders love the open-air feel a motorcycle gives them, while others appreciate the economy of excellent gas mileage and easy parking. Whatever your reasons are for riding, you deserve the same respect on the road as people in cars and trucks. However, riders often don’t get that respect and, because of that, they are always at risk of a devastating crash and catastrophic injuries caused by a negligent driver. The accident injury team at MacDowell Law Group is proud to protect the rights of motorcycle riders to recover the damages they deserve after an accident that was not their fault. If you ride a motorcycle, you owe it to yourself to learn about how an experienced accident attorney can help you after a crash.
How Negligent Drivers Cause Motorcycle Crashes
Just as there are dangerous drivers who choose to ignore traffic laws, there are also reckless motorcycle riders. When a rider speeds, loses control, and hits a tree, he has no one to blame but himself. However, when another driver’s careless actions cause the biker to crash, that driver should be held accountable.
Typical forms of driver negligence include:
Failure to yield.
A driver might claim that they didn’t see a motorcycle when they changed lanes or pulled out of a parking lot, but that is no excuse. Motorcycle riders are protected by the same traffic laws that protect drivers of other vehicles, including yielding the right of way.
When a driver glances at their cell phone, turns to talk to a passenger, or reaches for a cup of coffee, they take their eyes off the road long enough for a motorcycle to move into their path. Distraction is a major cause of all road accidents, especially motorcycle crashes.
Drunk or drugged driving.
Because motorcycles are smaller than cars and trucks, a driver must be fully alert and aware in order to see them and avoid an accident. An impaired driver often fails to recognize the danger and take evasive action.
Sometimes, drivers are just annoyed by motorcycles and take aggressive action to pass them or cut them off. This kind of behavior is dangerous and inexcusable.
Very much like impaired drivers, drowsy drivers often fail to see and avoid motorcycles on highways and interstates.
If you were following the rules of the road on your motorcycle and were cut off or hit by a negligent driver, our experienced team will investigate what happened and hold the driver accountable.
Types of Motorcycle Crashes
Cars and trucks can hit motorcycles in several ways, each as dangerous for the biker as the next. Common types of motorcycle accidents include the following:
When a motorist fails to check their blind spot for a motorcycle, they can hit the biker from the side, running the rider off the road or knocking the bike over.
Whether a driver fails to see a motorcycle or thinks he can beat the biker, when a car turns left in front of a cycle, the results can be deadly for the rider.
Driver distraction and an inadequate following distance can lead to a dangerous rear-end crash when a driver fails to stop in time to avoid hitting a motorcycle in front of them.
If a driver crosses a motorcyclist’s path, the biker will hit the car head-on, potentially causing them to flip off the bike and onto or over the car. This type of crash can be fatal for the biker.
Failing to see a motorcycle when crossing an intersection or pulling out of a parking lot or driveway can cause a driver to t-bone the bike. This kind of crash often directly impacts the rider’s body rather than the motorcycle, crushing legs and causing serious or even fatal injuries.
Any type of crash is potentially fatal to a rider, even if the rider is wearing a helmet and other safety gear. If the rider survives, they will likely sustain catastrophic injuries.
Typical Motorcycle Accident Injuries
Virginia is one of only 18 states with a universal helmet law, meaning every rider in Virginia must wear a helmet for their own protection. Many riders also choose to wear additional protective gear, such as Kevlar clothing, gloves, and boots. Despite these measures, however, bikers often sustain the following serious injuries when they crash:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injury and paralysis
- Broken bones
- Road rash and serious infections
- Chest injuries
- Facial and eye injuries
Any of these injuries could cause a life-long disability or prove to be fatal. If a family member was killed in a motorcycle crash, you might be able to seek justice through a wrongful death lawsuit. Our team can advise you of your options.
Damages You Could Be Owed
Understanding the long-term cost of injuries such as these comes with years of experience in personal injury law. The motorcycle accident team at MacDowell Law Group will apply their knowledge to determine how much you are owed for:
- Current medical expenses
- Future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Out-of-pocket costs
- Physical pain
- Emotional suffering
We will fight to ensure that you are compensated for everything you have lost because of a driver’s negligence.
What to Do After a Motorcycle Crash in Virginia
The first thing you should do after you are involved in a motorcycle crash is to seek medical care. Even if you think you are not injured, it is vital that you are checked out by a doctor. Some injuries, such as brain injuries and organ damage, may not be immediately apparent. A complete medical evaluation by a doctor will identify any injuries.
The next step you should take is to call an experienced motorcycle accident law firm. Not every personal injury firm is willing to represent motorcycle riders, but the team at MacDowell Law Group has successfully represented dozens of injured bikers in our 25 years of practice. In a free consultation, we will evaluate your claim and determine if we can add value to your case. If we can, we will tell you how.
Have You Been Injured In A Motorcycle Accident?
If you've been injured in a motorcycle accident you need to speak with an experienced motorcycle accident attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Fairfax, Virginia personal injury law office at 703.277.2811 to schedule your free consultation. We help clients throughout Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia and look forward to helping you.