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Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents

Motorcycle Accident Causes

According to traffic research from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were 84,000 riders injured and 5,014 motorcyclists fatalities in 2019. What commonly causes these types of accidents to occur?

  • Cars making left turns. Because of right-of-way errors and drivers not looking ahead when turning left, many motorcycle accidents occur during left turns.
  • Lane Splitting. When a rider drives between two lanes of traffic, that is referred to as lane splitting. Doing this is very dangerous and can lead to serious injuries.
  • Driving while under the influence. When motorcyclists or other people on the road drink and drive/ride, they put themselves at risk of being involved in an accident and/or being arrested.
  • Motorcycle Defects. Sometimes motorcycle parts are poorly manufactured and have defects that can increase the likelihood of a rider having issues that cause an accident.
  • Car Doors. Drivers in parked vehicles forget to check their mirrors before opening their doors, and sometimes drivers open their doors into the path of an oncoming motorcyclist.
  • Unsafe lane changes. Drivers often forget to check their blind spots or watch out for motorcycles on the road, and when they change lanes, they collide with a motorcyclist.
  • Speeding. When a motorcyclist or other vehicles exceeds the speed limit, they endanger themselves and others on the road. Speeding increases the likelihood of vehicles not being able to stop in time, losing control of their vehicle or steering ability, and experiencing a rollover.
  • Sudden stops. When a rider doesn’t leave enough distance between their vehicle and the one in front of them, they can get into a read-end collision.
  • Dangerous road conditions. Potholes, debris, cracked pavement, and other road and highway issues can cause motorcyclists to temporarily lose control of their vehicles.

Motorcycle Safety Tips for Riders

Here are some tips to help you stay safe while riding your motorcycle.

  • Always wear a helmet. If you are under 18 or have not been licensed for over a year, you are legally required to ride a helmet when riding on or operating a motorcycle in Ohio. While other riders do not have a legal responsibility to wear a helmet, it is in your best interest to wear one. Full face helmets can protect your head and protect your eyes and face as well.
  • Invest in protective gear. When you ride a motorcycle, you should wear long pants, boots that cover your ankles, gloves, and maybe even an abrasion-resistant jacket. Many companies make lightweight protective gear that is vented, which can make wearing the gear during the summer more bearable.
  • Check the weather before riding. Inclement weather can impact visibility and make the roads more dangerous. Checking the forecast on your route can help you plan ahead and avoid dangerous weather conditions.
  • Don’t drink and ride. Alcohol and drugs can dull your sense, impair your judgment, and delay your reaction time. If you plan to drink and enjoy a night out, use a ride-sharing gap or get a ride with a friend.
  • Rest when needed. If you are going on a long trip, take breaks every few hours. Driving drowsy is never a good idea.
  • Check your motorcycle before a ride. Many riders have a pre-ride checklist that reminds them to check their brake lights, tire pressure, fluid, etc.
  • Ride defensively. When you are out on the road or highway, drive with caution and avoid speeding or other reckless driving actions.
  • Ensure passengers are safe. If you are cruising around with someone else, you should make sure that they also have a helmet and protective gear.

If you or a loved one have been injured in a motorcycle accident, contact Bridges, Jillisky, Weller & Gullifer, LLC today by calling (937) 403-9033. Our attorneys have decades of combined experience and are equipped to help you fight for compensation. Once you retain our firm, we can work to investigate the cause of the accident, establish liability, calculate the damages you are owed, and fight to protect your rights.