Despite improvements in safety over the year, motorcycles remain markedly more dangerous than other types of vehicles found on the road. Motorcycles are generally less stable and less visible than cars and often come with high performance capabilities. Additionally, when motorcycles are involved in a crash, their riders lack the protection of an enclosed vehicle, so they are more likely to be killed or injured. The United States government estimates that for every mile traveled in 2013, the number of deaths on motorcycles was 26 times higher than the number of deaths in cars. Motorcycle deaths also continue to grow disproportionately to motorcycle use. In 1997, there were over 3.8 million motorcycles registered in the United States, a number that grew to over 6.2 million by 2005, a 68% increase. In the same time period, motorcycle fatalities rose from 2,116 to 4,810, an over 200% increase.
If you or a loved one is involved in a motorcycle or another type of automobile accident, you may be entitled to recover compensation for your injuries by bringing a legal claim against the responsible parties. The experienced personal injury attorneys at Goldstein Hayes & Lina, P.C. are here to help. Contact them today.
Ways to Stay Safe
According to the United States Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2013, motorcycles were responsible for 4,668 fatalities, down from 4,986 in 2012, with motorcycles being involved in over 11% of all roadway accidents. One of the most important ways that all motorcycles riders can make their ride safer is by wearing a helmet. Georgia, as spelled out in Georgia code 40-6-315, requires all motorcycle riders to wear a helmet. The NHTSA estimates that 1,630 motorcyclists’ lives and a further 715 lives could have been saved had all motorcyclists worn helmets. A motorcyclist not wearing a helmet is 40% more likely to die of a head injury and 15% more likely to suffer a nonfatal, than one who wears a helmet.
Watch the Road
More than half of motorcycle accidents involve another vehicle. Of the fatal motorcycle accidents that involved two-vehicles, 42% of them involved a vehicle turning left while the motorcycle was going straight, passing, or overtaking the vehicle. Being alert and aware of your surroundings not only makes you a safer driver, but could very well save your life. Despite over half of motorcycle accidents involving another vehicle, that leaves a little under half of all motorcycle accidents that occur with another motorcycle, accounting for 1,791 deaths in 2013. Of those deaths, 48% were speeding, and 42% had a blood alcohol level over 42%. Some of the other common causes of a motorcycle accident include:
Poor weather conditions
Not utilizing a turn signal
Lane splitting, when a motorcycle drives between two lanes
Ignoring traffic signals or conditions
It is important to always operate your motorcycle as safely as possible and to wear appropriate safety gear. If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident, you should contact the personal injury attorneys at Goldstein Hayes & Lina, P.C.; they can help you with your case.