What Are Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents?
By Michael London on December 14, 2018
Victims of car accidents caused by driver negligence may be entitled to compensation for their injuries. A car accident attorney can help.
When car accidents involve motorcyclists, victims often face more severe injuries and are at greater risk of a death. Understanding the common causes of motorcycle accidents in New York, NY can help drivers and motorcyclists avoid such dangerous accidents.
The attorneys of Douglas & London are experienced in helping victims of motorcycle accidents obtain the maximum settlement for their injuries. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, we welcome you to schedule a consultation today.
What Causes Motorcycle Accidents?
Motorcycle accidents may be caused by the motorcyclist or another driver on the road. Because of the small profile of motorcycles, the speed at which they can travel, and the fact that they can maneuver between vehicles, motorcycles can be difficult for other vehicles to see.
Unfortunately, this can lead to serious accidents. Sometimes a motorcycle accident isn't the fault of the motorcyclist or another driver but may occur due to poor road conditions.
Being aware of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents can help drivers and motorcyclists be more mindful when sharing the road and hopefully prevent accidents. The following are some examples of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents.
Lane splitting is when a motorcycle drives between two lanes of traffic and is mostly done during traffic jams, when traffic is slowed or stopped.
Although not legal in the state of New York, lane splitting still occurs, which makes it particularly dangerous in New York since drivers may not be anticipating motorcyclists to be splitting lanes.
The nature of lane splitting also means that motorcycles must pass closely by other vehicles. This can cause a motorcycle to hit a car as it tries to pass, or vice versa.
Vehicles Turning Left
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), about one-third of motorcycle crashes involving another vehicle are the result of the other vehicle turning into the motorcycle's path. Vehicles making left-hand turns are the most dangerous situation for motorcyclists.
During left-hand turns, a motorcycle and car may collide if the motorcycle continues to go straight while the car turns left or if the motorcycle tries to pass or overtake the car without realizing the car would be turning left.
Motorcyclists can reduce their risk of being hit in a left-hand turn accident by remaining visible at all times. For example, motorcyclists should:
- Avoid riding in a vehicle’s blind spot
- Be aware that drivers making left turns may not have good visibility of the motorcycle
People driving other vehicles should be mindful of motorcycles on the road and yield to oncoming traffic when making a left-hand turn at an uncontrolled intersection.
Speeding is a common cause of all motor vehicle accidents. When it comes to a motorcycle accident, the motorcyclist may have been speeding or the driver of the car may be responsible for the crash. Sometimes, both parties are driving too fast.
Driving or riding a motorcycle too fast can make it difficult to react to obstacles, hazards, or other vehicles in time to avoid a collision. Unfortunately, since motorcyclists are less protected than those in a car, they are at a higher risk of sustaining serious injuries or fatalities.
Driving or Riding Under the Influence
Driving under the influence is another common cause of motorcycle crashes. The NHTSA estimates that 43 percent of fatal motorcycle crashes involve alcohol.
Riding a motorcycle while under the influence is extremely dangerous. Alcohol impacts a person's balance, judgment, and reaction time, which can significantly impact a person's ability to ride a motorcycle.
It should also be noted that driving a car under the influence is also dangerous and can lead to a driver hitting a motorcycle.
Poor Road Conditions
Sometimes, a motorcycle accident is the result of poor road conditions. Pot holes, large cracks, and debris on the road can cause a motorcycle's wheel to get caught, resulting in an accident.
Poor road conditions may also be caused by weather. Rain, snow, and icy roads can put motorcycle riders at even greater risk.
Contact Our Motorcycle Accident Attorneys
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, our attorneys can help. To learn more about your legal options, please call (212) 566-7500 to schedule your personal consultation.
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