Dallas Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Motorcycle accident claims present a variety of unique challenges. A motorcycle accident lawyer can help you navigate the complexities that injured motorcyclists often confront when pursuing a claim for injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident.
- Motorcycle Accidents vs. Car Accidents
- Vulnerability of Rider
- Severity of Injuries
- Risk of Ejection
- Less Predictable Movements
- Damage to the Vehicle
- Legal and Bias Challenges
- Common Injuries in Motorcycle Accidents
- Determining Fault in a Motorcycle Accident
Motorcycle Accidents vs. Car Accidents
Motorcycle accidents differ from car accidents in several ways due to the inherent differences in the vehicles themselves and the vulnerabilities of motorcyclists. Here are some ways in which motorcycle accidents are unique:
Vulnerability of Rider
Motorcyclists lack the protective shell of a car, making them more vulnerable to injury. In a collision, motorcyclists are exposed directly to the impact, increasing the risk of severe injuries or fatalities.
Severity of Injuries
Injuries sustained in motorcycle accidents are often more severe than those in car accidents. Common injuries include road rash, fractures, traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and internal injuries.
Risk of Ejection
In a collision, motorcyclists are more likely to be thrown from their vehicles, leading to further potential for injury.
Less Predictable Movements
Motorcycles can accelerate quickly, weave in and out of lanes, and make sudden stops. Other drivers might not anticipate these maneuvers, leading to accidents.
Damage to the Vehicle
While cars might sustain damage but still be drivable after a minor accident, even a minor accident can render a motorcycle inoperable.
Legal and Bias Challenges
Motorcyclists can sometimes face biases in the legal system or among the general public, with assumptions that they are inherently “risk-takers” or “reckless.” This perception can affect insurance claims, police reports, or jury decisions.
Given these unique factors, motorcycle accidents present distinct challenges and considerations, both medically and legally.
Common Injuries in Motorcycle Accidents
Certainly, here’s a list of common injuries suffered in motorcycle accidents:
- Road Rash: Caused when a rider slides across the pavement, stripping away skin and potentially exposing underlying tissues.
- Fractures: Especially common in the limbs due to the instinct to extend arms or legs to brace for impact.
- Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs): Resulting from the force of the head striking the ground or another object, even among helmeted riders.
- Spinal Cord Injuries: Can lead to partial or complete paralysis, depending on severity and location.
- Internal Injuries: Damage to organs from the blunt force trauma of the accident.
- Biker’s Arm: A condition where the nerves in the upper arm are damaged, typically when a rider falls and lands on their arm.
- Dislocations: Often seen in the shoulder and knee joints.
- Facial Injuries: Can occur if a rider isn’t wearing a full-face helmet, leading to dental injuries, broken facial bones, and lacerations.
These injuries range in severity, but many require significant medical attention and can have lasting impacts on a person’s quality of life.
Determining Fault in a Motorcycle Accident
Determining fault in motorcycle accident cases can be influenced by several unique factors inherent to motorcycle dynamics, rider behavior, and public perceptions. Here are some unique factors that can affect the determination of fault in motorcycle accidents:
Motorcycles are smaller than cars, making them less visible. If a driver fails to check their blind spots or doesn’t notice a motorcycle approaching, they might claim they didn’t see the motorcycle, complicating the fault determination.
Motorcycles can change lanes quickly, weave between cars, and accelerate rapidly. If a motorcyclist is involved in an accident while making such a maneuver, the other party might argue that the motorcyclist was being reckless or unpredictable.
In some jurisdictions, motorcyclists are allowed to ride between lanes of slow-moving or stopped traffic (lane splitting). However, this practice can be controversial, and if an accident occurs during lane splitting, the determination of fault might be affected.
Motorcyclists are more susceptible to road hazards like potholes, debris, or wet surfaces. If a motorcyclist loses control due to a road hazard, determining fault might involve considering whether the motorcyclist was riding appropriately for conditions or if a third party (like a municipality) might bear some responsibility for poor road maintenance.
The use or non-use of protective gear, especially helmets, can influence perceptions of fault, even if the gear wouldn’t have prevented the accident itself.
A motorcyclist’s level of training and experience can come into play. An inexperienced rider might be deemed more at fault if they made errors that contributed to the accident.
Motorcyclists can face biases from the public, law enforcement, and even juries who might perceive them as risk-takers or reckless riders, influencing fault determination.
Motorcycle Equipment Malfunction
If the motorcycle had a mechanical issue or equipment malfunction that contributed to the accident, determining fault might involve examining if the rider properly maintained the motorcycle or if there was a manufacturer defect.
Given the unique dynamics of motorcycle accidents, witness accounts can be especially crucial. However, witnesses might misinterpret or misremember a motorcycle’s speed or actions due to its size and the speed at which events unfold.
Due to the unique nature of motorcycle accidents, specialized accident reconstruction might be necessary to determine fault accurately, considering factors like skid marks, impact points, and the final resting positions of the vehicles.
While these factors are specific to motorcycle accidents, determining fault always involves considering all available evidence, statements from involved parties, witness testimonies, and expert analyses.