The very thing that the majority of motorcyclists love about riding is the very thing that makes riding the most dangerous – the freedom of being part of the open road. Unlike other types of vehicles that offer protection to occupants if they are struck by another vehicle, there is nothing between the rider on a motorcycle and the other vehicle, even if the rider is wearing all the recommended safety gear.
Unfortunately, that lack of a barrier often results in serious to catastrophic injuries for the motorcyclist. The recovery time and extensive medical expenses to treat those injuries can have a significant impact on a victim’s life and their ability to provide for their family. Many victims are even left with permanent damage or disability that requires life-long medical care.
Frequent Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
While there are many different reasons why a motorcycle crash can occur, the majority of them are caused by actions or negligence on the part of another vehicle driver. Some of the most common that we see in the cases we take at our Virginia personal injury law firm include:
Moving Vehicles: The most common motorcycle crashes are caused by other vehicles taking left turns, changing lanes, and rear-ending the motorcycle. It is not uncommon for other vehicle drivers to be totally unaware that there is a motorcycle in the next lane and just pull in front of them. They also often misjudge speed or fail to check blind spots.
Road Hazards: A driver of a motorcycle can lose control of the bike if they come to road surfaces that are covered in debris or are wet. If the weather caused the crash, there is obviously no liable party since you can’t sue Mother Nature, however, if the debris was caused by another party, then an injured victim may be able to pursue a lawsuit. For example, if a trucking company failed to secure cargo it was transporting and it leaked, causing the motorcyclist to crash, then the trucking company could be held liable for their negligence.
Vehicle Doors: Occupants in parked vehicles are another frequent cause of crashes. People open their car doors without even looking, causing the rider to suddenly swerve into another lane to avoid being hit. This can be deadly if there is a vehicle in that other lane. This is also a common cause of bicycle accidents.
Motorcycle Defects: Another common cause of motorcycle accidents are dangerous or defective parts. If a motorcycle manufacturer develops a bike that has a dangerous design flaw or uses parts that are defective, they can be held liable for someone is injured due to that dangerous issue.
Unfortunately, there are motorcyclists who do not always follow the rules of the road or safety tips that are recommended for riders. Issues such as speeding, driving under the influence, and inexperience can result in tragic results for riders.
Contact a Virginia Motorcycle Accident Attorney
If you or a loved one were injured in a motorcycle accident, it is critical not to delay contacting a Virginia motorcycle accident lawyer from Shapiro, Appleton & Washburn. Virginia has strict laws regarding how long you have to file your personal injury claim. If the statute of limitations expires, you will be unable to collect financial damages for any medical expenses, loss of income, pain and suffering, or any other losses you or your family may be entitled to. Call our office today to schedule a free and confidential consultation.
An experienced personal injury attorney with dual licensure in Virginia and North Carolina, Eric Washburn received a B.B.A. in Finance from James Madison University—initially worked in the information technology field before obtaining his law degree from Thomas M. Cooley Law School in Lansing, Michigan. Once an Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney in Danville, Va., Eric has been recognized by Super Lawyers Magazine as a “Rising Star” Super Lawyer in Virginia since 2014.