Motorcycle accidents include elements that are not present in regular auto accidents. They are also more likely to result in injury or death. More than 80% of motorcycle accidents result in death or serious injury. Motorcyclists also have the very real prejudice of law enforcement, accident investigators, insurance company representatives and juries to contend with. In reality, a large majority of motorcycle accidents are caused by other drivers violating the motorcyclist’s right of way.
As with all accidents there are certain things that you should do immediately after the accident, if at all possible, including:
- Report the accident to law enforcement
- Get contact information from everyone involved and any witnesses
- Get statements from witnesses
- Seek medical attention even if you do not think you are injured. After an accident you may be in shock or have injuries that you are not aware of
- Take photos of the accident scene and any injuries
- Do not admit guilt
- Write down everything that happened and everything that you remember about the accident as soon as possible, before your memory fades
- Speak to an experienced motorcycle accident attorney right away
Other things that you can do to help with your case include:
- Do not have your motorcycle repaired until you have spoken with your attorney. In most cases you will need to have it inspected and allow the other driver the opportunity to conduct an independent inspection
- Keep all receipts for any expenses related to the accident, including repairs and medical bills
- Keep a journal of how the accident affects your everyday life including any physical and emotional pain or limitations
- If your job is affected, by causing you to miss time at work, change duties, or even lose your job, keep a record of this as well, including all lost income
Helmet laws vary from state to state. Failure to wear a helmet, in any state, does not mean that you do not have a claim, but it can mean that you are entitled to reduced compensation for your injuries.
About two-thirds of motorcycle accidents involving another vehicle are caused by the other driver violating the motorcyclist’s right of way. The most common reason for motorcycle accidents, given by auto drivers is that they did not see the motorcycle. Some motorcycle accidents are caused by defects in the motorcycle itself. This is very common in single vehicle motorcycle accidents. Many motorcycles have a front-end problem which causes a wobble at high speeds.
Many single vehicle motorcycle accidents are actually caused by another driver. When auto drivers violate motorcyclist’s right of way, the motorcyclist tries to avoid a collision. Braking and swerving to avoid an accident with another vehicle often causes the motorcycle to crash without striking the other vehicle. In this type of accident fault can be very difficult to prove.
Motorcycle accident claims are unique and require special expertise. If you or a loved one has been in a motorcycle accident, contact an experienced motorcycle accident attorney today by finding your state below.