A mangled motorcycle laying on the street after a crash.

Riding a motorcycle is a great way to get around New York City. Motorcycles are very convenient and more economical to own and operate than automobiles. Despite their advantages, there’s no getting away from the fact that motorcycle riders are more likely to be involved in accidents, and when accidents occur, motorcycle riders and their passenger are more likely to sustain serious injuries or fatalities.

Motorcyclists have the same right to use the road as people who drive cars, trucks, and SUVs. Most motorcycle riders are responsible citizens who ride carefully and follow the rules. The biggest threat to motorcyclists is careless drivers who disobey traffic laws, make dangerous maneuvers, and fail to look out for motorcycles. Roadway hazards are another major cause of motorcycle accidents.

Why Are Motorcycle Accidents More Dangerous?

In a recent year, 5579 motorcycle riders lost their lives due to traffic accidents. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), when an accident occurs, a motorcycle rider is 28 times more likely to suffer a fatality than someone traveling inside a motor vehicle. In 80 percent of reported accidents, motorcycle riders suffer an injury or fatality.

An automobile has several features to protect occupants when a collision occurs. The car’s cabin is surrounded by metal on all sides, and unlike a motorcycle, a car has seatbelts and airbags to protect drivers and passengers.

When a motorcycle collides with another object, such as a motor vehicle, the rider’s body will absorb the impact of the collision. Momentum may carry the rider through the air until their motion is stopped by impact with an object, or the rider may be dragged along the pavement.

What Causes Most Motorcycle Accidents?

The main cause of motorcycle accidents is unsafe automobile drivers. That’s why motorcycle accidents are more likely to occur in places where there are more automobiles. In fact, 67 percent of motorcycle accidents happen on urban roads.

Careless, intoxicated, and inexperienced drivers are much more likely to cause crashes. Motorcycle accidents occur more frequently at night when visibility is reduced and a higher percentage of drivers have been drinking. Another major threat to motorcycle riders is unlicensed drivers, who are involved in more than a third of motorcycle accidents, according to Forbes Magazine.

Unsafe driver behavior that contributes to motorcycle accidents includes:

  • Driving while intoxicated (DWI)
  • Distracted driving
  • Speeding
  • Tailgating
  • Aggressive driving
  • Unsafe turns
  • Unexpected stops
  • Dangerous maneuvers
  • Unsafe merges and lane changes

Poor Road Conditions That Cause Motorcycle Accidents

Another major cause of motorcycle accidents is poor road maintenance. Motorcycle riders may be harmed in collisions with large objects left in the roadway. If the rider is able to avoid the hazard, it may cause them to lose control of their bike.

A motorcycle only has two wheels, making it a lot less stable than an automobile. Wet roads or sand and gravel reduce traction, and this causes falls. Damaged roads with missing or inconsistent pavement also create a hazard for motorcycles. Obscured or missing road signs or malfunctioning traffic signals cause confusion for drivers and riders, especially at intersections.

Unsafe road conditions and inadequate maintenance that lead to motorcycle accidents include:

  • Potholes
  • Drop-offs
  • Poor lighting
  • Slippery surfaces
  • Debris
  • Large objects in the road
  • Uneven or improperly graded pavement

Injuries Caused by Motorcycle Accidents

Motorcycle riders are particularly vulnerable to unsafe road conditions and careless decisions made by drivers. Due to their lack of protection, riders and their passengers often suffer serious injuries when an accident occurs. Common motorcycle accident injuries include:

How Your New York Motorcycle Accident Injury Attorney Can Help

Your NY motorcycle accident injury lawyer will investigate the accident and file a claim or a lawsuit against anyone whose negligent actions contributed to your injuries. This may include careless drivers or public officials and private contractors who are responsible for road and highway maintenance.

Manufacturers of defective automobile components may also be held liable for your injuries. Another frequent cause of motorcycle accidents is when trucking and delivery companies engage in negligent hiring and other unsafe policies or when they fail to properly supervise drivers.

After completing their investigation, your personal injury lawyer will file a claim or a lawsuit that includes the following types of damages:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Occupational therapy
  • Reduced earning potential
  • Disfigurement
  • Medical devices
  • Reduced quality of life
  • Wheelchair ramps for your home
  • Wrongful death

Do You Have Severe Injuries from a Motorcycle Accident?

The experienced litigators at Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro, Moses & Halperin, LLP have won over a billion dollars for our clients. Our New York City personal injury attorneys have been recognized by the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Super Lawyers Magazine for our achievements.

Call us at (212) 986-7353 to schedule a free consultation today.

Posted in: Motorcycle Accident