Motorcycles are amazing machines that give many riders a feeling of freedom and adventure. Yet, motorcyclists are often at high risk of being hit by other vehicles. Compared to cars, motorcycles are much smaller in size and have less protection, without seatbelts or airbags. This makes motorcycle riders much more vulnerable to injury in the event of an accident.
According to the 2020 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) report, motorcycles accounted for 14 percent of all traffic fatalities with 5,579 motorcyclists killed. Sadly, at the time, this was the highest number of motorcyclists killed since the Fatality Analysis Reporting System started in 1975.
All traffic accidents are dangerous, but the evidence indicates that motorcyclists are at a high risk of suffering serious injury or death in an accident. Nevertheless, you should not have to suffer the effects of a collision on your own. Instead, call Kiley Law Group to find out your rights and how we can help you protect them.
Motorcycle Accident Fatality Rates
Traffic accidents claim the lives of thousands of Americans every year. The 2020 traffic crash data revealed that 42,708 people lost their lives in collisions throughout the country.
Unfortunately, the fatality rates of motorcycle accidents are often much higher than in car accidents. Motorcyclist fatalities occurred nearly 28 times more frequently than passenger car occupant fatalities, per vehicle miles traveled, in 2020.
Various reasons may increase the seriousness of motorcycle accidents including:
- A vehicle with four wheels is generally more stable than 2 wheels
- Motorcyclists are usually more vulnerable to severe injuries due to a lack of external barriers or restraints (such as seatbelts, airbags, cabin)
- Motorcyclists are less visible compared to larger vehicles and may be more prone to being hit
- If a motorcyclist is hurled into the air, he or she may collide with an object or hit the ground at high speeds
Types of Injuries Caused By a Motorcycle Accident
Motorcyclists and their passengers may be more prone to serious injuries due to the lack of protection that usually comes from being in an enclosed vehicle.
Common motorcycle accident injuries may include:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Head or facial injuries
- Neck and spinal injuries
- Organ damage
- Internal bleeding
- Broken limbs
- Fractured bones
- Cuts and lacerations
- Road rash
- Fatal injuries
Common Reasons a Motorcycle Accident May Occur
Like most auto accidents, motorcycle crashes are often caused by negligence. Negligence refers to a person failing to behave with a reasonable standard of care that is expected.
Various scenarios may contribute to a serious traffic accident. These may include:
- Distracted driving: Texting, checking maps or GPS, or changing radio stations can distract a driver
- Speeding: Driving at an excessive speed is dangerous for all motorists, but particularly for motorcyclists since they have less external protection in case of a fall or crash
- Road hazards: Potholes, slick roads, or standing water can be dangerous for motorcyclists and may cause them to lose control
- Insufficient road signs: Inadequate signage or warnings of road conditions can hinder a rider’s ability to anticipate and avoid dangers
- Inclement weather: Rain, wind, or sunshine can become a threat to drivers on the road if they do not drive to the conditions
- Driving under the influence (DUI): Drugs and alcohol can impair a driver’s ability to operate their vehicle
- Left-hand turns: Vehicles making a left-hand turn in front of a motorcycle can result in a sudden collision
- Lane splitting: The opinions on lane splitting vary, but motorcyclists driving between vehicles are at higher risk of getting too close to other vehicles
- Unsafe lane changing: Drivers must check their blind spots before changing lanes; otherwise, they may fail to see a motorcycle passing
Compensation for Motorcycle Accident Injuries
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation for your damages. Recovering your losses for a motorcycle accident may depend on a number of factors, including the circumstances of your accident and the severity of your injuries.
Generally, a motorcycle accident lawyer can help you to pursue compensation for accident-related damages including:
- Medical costs
- Pain and suffering
- Lost income
- Loss of earning capacity
- Property damage
- Funeral expenses
- Loss of companionship
The Massachusetts lawyers at the Kiley Law Group have been representing injury victims for more than 40 years, during which our legal team has recovered more than $500 million dollars for our clients during their time of need.
If you have questions about your motorcycle accident, talk to one of our motorcycle accident attorneys today to find out how we can help you. Call us at (888) 435-1321 for a free no obligation case evaluation today!
How to Establish Negligence in a Motorcycle Accident?
Whether you were involved in a car accident or a motorcycle accident, the same principle applies to establishing negligence. There are 4 criteria that must be met before a person can seek compensation for an accident based on negligence.
The four elements that must be established include:
- Duty – The defendant owes the plaintiff a duty of reasonable care to act in a safe manner, such as driving safely
- Breach – The defendant failed to carry out their duty of care and acted recklessly
- Causation – This breach of conduct caused an accident that resulted in injury to another person(s)
- Damages – The injuries the plaintiff sustained led to financial damages, such as medical expenses and time off work
Hiring an experienced lawyer can be a good advantage in establishing negligence. Motorcycle accident attorneys have the knowledge and resources to diligently seek a fair compensation settlement amount that reflects your losses.
Massachusetts Comparative Negligence Law
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts follows the comparative fault law for cases involving negligence. According to this rule, whether or not a person was involved in a car or motorcycle accident, an injured victim who shares fault can still pursue compensation for damages. That person is not barred from recovery as long as he or she shares less than 51 percent of the fault for the accident.
Compensatory damages are adjusted according to the amount of negligence attributed to the injured party. A qualified personal injury lawyer can help you get the amount of compensation you need, by navigating the complex legal procedures and ensuring all appropriate documents are submitted.
Talk to one of our motorcycle accident lawyers to find out your rights.
Dealing with Bad Faith Insurance Companies
Motorcycle accidents can be quite costly due to the severe damage they can cause to the victim. Insurance companies often view motorcycles as high risk and may become more aggressive in their defense when it comes to motorcycle accident claims. If a costly motorcycle claim is presented, insurance companies and insurance adjusters are more likely to look for ways to reject a claim or reduce their costs.
Insurance companies understand the system and they know how to use their knowledge for their benefit. Many insurance companies can be biased when it comes to motorcyclists and may work hard to deny your claim.
Thus, it is highly recommended to have good legal representation for your case to level the playing ground. Our legal team works hard to counteract the prejudice against motorcyclists, so let our attorneys build a strong case for you and fight for your rights.
Why Hire a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer?
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, it is vital that you have quality legal representation guiding you through the aftermath of an incident. The attorneys at Kiley Law Group understand how devastating it can be for motorcycle accident victims and their families to live through the consequences of another person’s negligent actions.
We want to ensure that our clients get the justice they deserve so they can move on with their lives. Although we cannot undo the past, we can help you to look to the future with hope.
When you hire our legal team to protect your rights, your attorney will:
- Visit the accident scene
- Gather relevant evidence such as police reports, witness statements, and photos
- Review case material
- Conduct a thorough investigation into the cause of your accident
- Determine all negligent parties involved in the accident
- Advocate for your rights
- Safeguard you from insurance company tactics
- Consult recognized experts
- Manage all correspondence and negotiations with the insurance companies
- Keep you and your family up to date with the progress of your case
Quality Legal Representation You Can Trust
Tom Kiley, Sr. is the founder and partner of the Kiley Law Group. He has been a lawyer for more than 40 years and riding motorcycles even longer.
With his love of bikes and his passion for justice, Tom has represented over 1,000 motorcyclists and their families who have been injured or killed in traffic accidents. He understands motorcycle riders, and the unique challenges they face when confronted with a serious accident.
The lawyers at Kiley Law Group are honored to be able to represent the motorcycling community and help them seek justice for their suffering. We work on a contingency basis, so you don’t pay a penny until we win your case for you.
We have successfully recovered over $500 million dollars for our clients, so take advantage of our No Fee Guarantee offer. Find out why our clients love Kiley Law Group and check out our client testimonials page.
If you have questions about your case and would like to know more about your rights, call us at (888) 435-1321 to schedule a free consultation with one of our team today.