Knowing how dangerous it is to ride motorbikes, Virginia state laid down rules to govern motorcycle riders. These rules dictate that apart from licensing and registration, you have to wear certain safety equipment.
A helmet is one of the most important pieces of equipment to have on. The universal helmet law states that all riders should have a helmet on when operating the vehicle. A motorcycle operator must also wear a face shield and safety goggles. Despite these laws, motorcycle accidents still occur. Accidents involving motorcycles are often more severe for the motorcycle rider.
In this article, we would be talking about motorcycle accidents. That is, the causes of motorcycle crashes, injuries you can get from them, and how to prove fault in motorcycle accidents. Motorcycle accidents are no laughing matter. So, if you or anyone you know was in a motorcycle accident, you should contact a motorcycle accident attorney today.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Crashes on Virginia Roads
Several factors could cause a motorcycle crash to occur on Virginia roads. They could range from distracted driving to dangerous road design. The motorcyclist or another motorist could be at fault in the accident. Thus, riders must have the necessary protection when riding.
The common causes of motorcycle crashes are discussed below.
If the road is in terrible conditions, accidents are bound to happen. Issues such as potholes, lack of appropriate road signals, crumbling pavements, etc., can increase an accident’s chances. If, because of potholes, a vehicle has to stop suddenly, a motorcyclist coming from behind could crash into the vehicle, causing a collision.
- Distracted Drivers
Several things could distract a driver or motorcycle rider. Some of such items include phones, passengers, pedestrians, and others. If you hope to avoid motorcycle accidents, give full attention to the road.
- Negligent Drivers
A negligent driver ignores the road rules and does not put other road users into consideration when driving. The negligent party is usually at fault if an accident occurs. When a driver speeds, drives under the influence, or is inexperienced, such a driver is negligent.
- Lane Splitting
Lane splitting is when a motorcycle driver rides in the middle of two vehicles in traffic. In Virginia, lane splitting is not necessarily illegal. However, when a rider is lane splitting, they have to be extra careful and take note of sudden stops or turns of other vehicles.
- Corner or Left-Hand Turns
When a driver or motorbike rider does not observe the right of way law or misjudges the distance when making a turn, it could lead to disastrous events. If a motorcyclist is riding in the blind spot of a truck driver, for instance, when the truck driver makes a left-hand turn, the motorcycle rider could get hit.
- Weather Conditions
When the road surface is slippery from rain or snow, it could cause vehicular accidents on Virginia roads. Also, if the rain becomes serious, it could be blinding and cause other visual impairments, making it difficult to drive.
Proving Fault in a Motorcycle Accident
After getting involved in a motorbike crash, as a rider, your concern would be to recover from your injuries and get compensation for your damages. If you hope to obtain maximum compensation, you would need to prove that you are not at fault for the accident. Insurance companies are always looking to place the blame on the motorcycle rider.
Filing a personal injury claim and proving fault in a motorbike accident could be a complex one. This is why you need the services of experienced personal injury attorneys, who would help you prove you were not at fault in the crash. They would also deal accordingly with the insurance company.
In a motorcycle claim, a rider could be eligible for the following legal damages:
- Economic Damages: These damages cover the monetary aspect of your losses. They include medical bills, future medical expenses, loss of income, property damage, etc. In instances where there was a loss of lives, wrongful death damages would be included.
- Non-Economic Damages: This type of damage focuses on the accident’s emotional, psychological, and mental effects. Non-economic damages include “Pain and suffering,” post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), emotional distress, etc.
- Punitive Damages: Punitive damages are awarded when the fault driver caused the accident on purpose.
Stating and declaring that the other driver or motorist is at fault in the accident is not enough. You or your attorney must do the following to prove fault:
- Investigate the accident scene
- Examine the vehicles in the crash
- Interview eyewitnesses
- Investigate the actions of both motorists before the accident
Through these processes, the court would be able to determine who would be responsible for the accident.
Those who could be held liable for a motorcycle accident include
- Other motorists
- The motorbike rider
- Manufacturers of the motorcycle or other vehicle
Injuries From Virginia Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycle riders usually end up with catastrophic injuries due to minimal protection. Thus, it is essential for injured riders who have major injuries to seek medical help immediately. Five out of the many injuries a rider can sustain from a Virginia motorcycle accident include:
- Head Injuries: Head injuries such as a traumatic brain injury could have long-term or even permanent effects on the injury victims. This is why wearing a helmet is compulsory for a motorcycle or scooter rider.
- Spinal Cord Injuries: A spinal cord injury could make the rider disabled for life. The severity of the crash could impact the seriousness of spinal injuries.
- Road Rash: Road rash is when a rider is hurt due to sliding across the road or pavement after being flung from the motorcycle. It is usually worse than a simple bruise or scrape.
- Broken or Fractured Bones: If the rider gets thrown off the bike after impact, it could lead to the fracture or breaking of bones. For example, if the rider tries to break their fall, their arms could suffer serious damage.
- Muscle Damage: Muscle damage can occur anywhere in the body of the injured rider, such as the arms, legs, etc. If such muscle damage is not cared for, it could lead to paralysis.
Why You Should Hire a Motorcycle Accident Attorney From CAIL
A motorcycle accident attorney or personal injury lawyer from CAIL Personal Injury Law Firm would be very instrumental in your claim for damages. We are familiar with the filing process, and we would see you through the procedures. We would also give you legal advice on the steps to take.
We come in handy when it comes to negotiating with the insurance company of the at-fault driver. Our personal injury attorneys would rebut whatever tricks insurance companies try to use to ensure injured motorcycle riders don’t get the necessary compensation.
We do not require any upfront fees. So, contact us today and book a free consultation with our motorcycle accident lawyers.