A Jacksonville Motorcycle Accident Attorney Explains the Dangers of Motorcycle Accidents
In a temperate state like North Carolina, many feel the call of the open road and the irresistible urge to hit the highways on their motorcycles. Still, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were 5,014 motorcycle accident deaths in 2019, far outnumbering typical motor vehicle accident deaths. The high rate of fatalities for motorcycle riders is particularly tragic because many motorcycle accidents are preventable. Unfortunately, many of these accidents are caused by the negligent driving of other vehicle drivers on the road. Motorcycle riders often suffer severe injuries in any collision with a passenger vehicle, and collisions with big trucks are even more damaging. If you’ve suffered injuries or damage to your motorcycle as a result of a collision, a Jacksonville motorcycle accident lawyer at the Pope Law Firm can help.
What Causes So Many Motorcycle Accident Fatalities in North Carolina?
Motorcycle riders are at a severe disadvantage on the road for two main reasons:
- Motorcycles are notoriously difficult to see in traffic because they have a narrow profile. For example, most rearview mirrors are adjusted to see cars, and motorcycles often fall into a passenger vehicle’s blind spots.
- Unlike cars or trucks, motorcycle riders have relatively limited protection in the event of an accident. Aside from a helmet and hopefully some thick clothing, there is nothing between a rider and the road or the vehicle itself.
This is a deadly combination. Generally speaking, motorcycles are hard to see, leading to more accidents, and particularly vulnerable when the accidents occur.
How Can North Carolina Motorcycle Riders Protect Themselves in Traffic?
There is no single way for motorcycle riders to be safe in traffic, primarily because accidents are most often the fault of the vehicle driver rather than the motorcycle rider. However, there are certain steps a motorcycle rider can take to decrease the chances of devastating injuries caused by accident, including:
- Staying well behind the vehicle in front of you so that you have time to avoid any unexpected maneuvers by the vehicle.
- Never riding between lanes of traffic.
- Riding defensively and expecting that the vehicles around you will make a mistake.
- Never speeding.
- Never riding impaired, drowsy, or distracted.
- Always riding with your headlight on.
- Ensure the vehicle driver can see you before you attempt to pass, turn, or stop.
Additionally, the gear you wear while riding can offer some additional protection should an accident occur:
- Helmets. Helmets are the single most important piece of gear a rider can have. Your helmet should be DOT-approved and uniquely fit on your head.
- Gloves. You should wear riding gloves for protection from the cold, bugs, rocks, and skids. You may want different seasonal sets.
- Eye Protection. If you wear a full-face helmet, you won’t need any additional eye protection. With other types of helmets, always wear goggles or glasses to protect your eyes. Your eye protection should be shatter-resistant and provide UV protection. When riding, it’s a good idea to have an additional pair on hand.
- Boots. Boots help protect against debris flying off the road and burns from hot pipes. They should cover the ankles and have non-skid soles to better grip the footpegs.
- Jacket. A riding jacket should be designed to protect against abrasion and brightly colored to increase visibility. Thick leather and kevlar are the best materials.
- Pants. Protection, rather than style, is the goal. Again, leather and Kevlar are the safest choices.
- Rain Gear. Rain gear is critical if the weather turns bad. Your rain gear should be easy to access and comfortable.
A Jacksonville Motorcycle Accident Attorney From The Pope Law Firm Can Help if You’ve Suffered From an Accident
If you’ve suffered personal injuries or damage to your motorcycle because of another driver’s negligence, a Jacksonville motorcycle accident lawyer from the Pope Law Firm has the experience and the unique skill set to help you recover the financial compensation you’re entitled to. We’ll do an independent investigation and handle your insurance and legal claims so that you can focus on recovery. Contact us before speaking to any insurance company. We can help.