The Most Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents & How to Handle Them
Thousands of people die motorcycle accidents every year in the U.S., indicating just how dangerous riding can be. In fact, according to the Insurance Information Institute, in 2017 alone, more than 5,000 motorcyclists died as a result of crashes.
Below, we discuss some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents, as well as several important steps anyone involved in an accident should take in order to ensure that you and everyone else involved are safe:
Rear-End Accidents & Speeding
More than 80 percent of all motorcycle accidents involve rear-end accidents that can lead to serious injuries if the rider is traveling at a high speed, which is yet another common cause of these accidents. Even small increases in speed can result in disproportionate intensification of injury. Because motorcycles are lacking airbags and safety belts, if riders fall off, they can not only sustain serious injuries, but severe facial trauma, fractures, and systemic injuries.
Cars Turning Left & Riders Trying to Overtake Cars
Cars turning left right in front of motorcycles quickly without using their indicators is another significant contributor to motorcycle accidents each year, as well as motorcycles trying to overtake a car that then tries to suddenly turn.
Lane splitting – where a motorcyclist splits lanes between cars in order to move through traffic quickly – is currently illegal in Texas (although legislators continue to introduce bills to try to make the practice legal). Still, that does not mean that riders do not try to split lanes frequently here, and it can place their lives at risk when they do, especially if they get too close to cars.
What to Do If You or A Loved One Has Been Involved in A Motorcycle Accident
If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident, make sure that you take the following steps in order to ensure that anyone involved is safe:
- Make sure that you are stopped in a safe location, with your hazard lights on, that is out of the way of other cars and allows medical personnel to reach anyone who might be injured
- Call 911 and provide them with as much detail as possible regarding your location and any victims that might be injured. If others have stopped to help, ask if anyone is trained in providing first aid
- If you have a background in medical training, you can try to assist anyone who might be injured, however, do not try to remove a rider’s helmet, as this could lead to permanent injury. Also avoid removing the rider themselves unless they are in imminent danger if they remain where they are
- Once that everything possible is done to ensure that everyone involved is safe, gather as much information about the accident and everyone involved as possible, including taking pictures of the accident
Our Texas Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Are Ready to Help
If you or a loved one has been in a motorcycle accident, contact Houston motorcycle accident attorney Sue E. West to discuss next steps, as well as your rights and options for obtaining compensation in order to recover from your injuries and any damages suffered.