Common causes of motorcycle accidents include an error on the part of the motorcyclist or a negligent act on the part of a motor vehicle operator.
Negligent Behaviors Can cause a Motorcycle Accident
There are several ways that a driver can behave negligently and injure a motorcyclist. Some common causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- Changing lanes recklessly: If a driver changes lanes without checking their blind spot or fails to yield the right-of-way to a motorcycle operator, they could clip the motorcycle or cause the operator to swerve out of control.
- Speeding: If a motor vehicle driver is traveling too fast for road conditions, they may be unable to stop from rear-ending a motorcycle operator.
- Failing to survey: Failure to check twice for motorcycles can cause a serious side-swipe accident. It can be even more dangerous if the motor vehicle operator fails to properly survey an intersection before making a left turn.
- Driving under the influence: A driver who has been drinking alcohol or taking drugs may not be able to respond to situations on the road in a timely manner, resulting in a crash. An accident can occur even if the driver is not over the legal limit for intoxication.
- Opening car door: If a driver opens their door without looking, they may cause a dooring accident.
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Motorcycle Operators Contribute to Accidents
Motorcycle riders can behave negligently and cause or contribute to accidents, as well. Some potential negligent behaviors include:
- Lane splitting: Lane splitting is not legal in New York and can lead to serious injuries for riders if a driver attempts to change lanes as the motorcycle operator passes by.
- Riding while under the influence: Alcohol or drugs can hamper a rider’s judgment and cause them to react more slowly to events. In fact, in 2016, approximately one-fourth of motorcycle riders involved in fatal crashes were under the influence, according to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA).
- Speeding: A motorcycle operator traveling over the speed limit may be unable to avoid a stopped car or another hazard in the road.
Motorcycle Operators Who Contribute to Accidents May Still be Entitled to Compensation
If you were injured in a motorcycle accident that you contributed to, you may still be able to recover compensation. Per New York Civil Practice Law and Rules (CVP) §1411, you can contribute to an accident and still recover compensation. However, it is important to note that your contribution will affect your settlement.
Recoverable Compensation in a Motorcycle Accident Case
You may be entitled to compensation for any of the following:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Diminished earning capacity
- Miscellaneous costs associated with the accident
- Mental anguish
- Pain and suffering
This is not an exhaustive list. Our team can help you determine the damages to which you may be entitled.
Motorcycle Operators Have a Much Higher Fatality Rate Compared to Other Road Users
According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), in 2018, per 100 million miles traveled, the fatality rate for motorcycle operators was 24.83, compared to 0.91 and 0.66 for passenger car drivers and light truck drivers, respectively.
Even if a motorcyclist survives this crash, they are likely to suffer significant injuries that may require hospitalization due to a lack of protection. A motorcyclist could be left with a difficult recovery, leading to a reduction in quality of life or the possibility of permanent disability.
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Let us Defend Your Right to Receive Compensation
If you were injured in a motorcycle accident in or around New Hyde Park, you may be entitled to compensation for your pain and suffering, medical bills, and any miscellaneous expenses related to the accident. Should you have long-lasting complications related to your injuries, leaving you needing ongoing medical care and reducing your ability to work, you can receive compensation for those items too.
The team at the Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP is ready to help. We appreciate the opportunity to defend the rights of those who are victims of negligence. For a free review of your case, call us at (516) 358-6900 today.