Yes, motorcycles can generally stop faster than cars. However, there are limitations on braking for any vehicle. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) explains that motorcyclists often hesitate to use their front brakes even if they might strike something perhaps out of fear that the bike will roll over them if they apply them too hard.
Even when motorcyclists can brake and avoid accidents, larger vehicles may not. This can lead to a motorcycle accident, especially if a larger vehicle follows a motorcyclist at an unsafe distance.
Best Practices That May Help Drivers Avoid Sudden Braking (and Accidents)
Many good driving practices may spare a driver from braking dangerously:
- Avoiding distraction: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes that distracted drivers routinely strike other vehicles, pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists. These drivers may re-focus on the road only once it’s too late they may slam on their brakes but cannot stop before hitting the object in front of them.
- Maintaining a safe distance from other vehicles: Motorists who drive dangerously close to other vehicles increase the risk of an accident. Even motorcycles can’t stop on a dime, and heavier motor vehicles certainly can’t. When motorists give themselves little room for error, they put themselves and others at risk of serious injury.
- Maintaining a vehicle: If a driver needs to brake, they want to know that those brakes work. Keeping a vehicle in good condition may decrease the risk that brakes might fail and cause an avoidable collision.
- Being alert and sober: Intoxication, tiredness, and emotional instability may all increase a driver’s risk of being in an accident. If drivers aren’t sufficiently alert and sober when driving, they endanger everyone.
- Driving defensively: If someone sees other drivers acting erratically, they should maintain their distance. By avoiding such drivers (to the degree that you can), a person may decrease their own risk of an accident with intoxicated or reckless drivers prone to dangerous lane changes or sudden braking.
Even if you – or another driver – follow all safety recommendations, motor vehicle and motorcycle accidents might not be avoidable. If you or a loved one was in a motorcycle accident, always consider seeking legal help regarding compensation for your losses.
What to Do After a Motorcycle Accident
Motorcycle accidents pose a high risk of severe injury and death.
Because a motorcyclist has little protection aside from padded clothing and a helmet, a collision may:
- Throw them from the motorcycle and into the roadway
- Send their body into physical objects like signs, medians, barriers, and motor vehicles
- Pin them under a motor vehicle
- Cause life-threatening injuries
You may be dealing with medical care, helping an injured loved one, and other duties after a motorcycle accident. Yet, you may also want to take legal action against liable parties. An attorney can be an immense help.
Hire a Motorcycle Accident Attorney as Soon as Possible
Never wait to get legal help. Many states have strict statutes that limit your time to take legal action after a motorcycle accident. A personal injury lawyer can help start your insurance claim or lawsuit as quickly as possible.
How an Attorney Can Help After a Motorcycle Accident
A lawyer will lead your case for compensation from start to finish.
Your car accident lawyer’s earliest tasks will often include:
- Recording your account of the motorcycle accident
- Obtaining and reviewing any evidence or documentation of losses that you have to date
- Helping you find medical care while documenting your injuries and treatments
- Explaining their strategy for your case
Once they gather the information they need from you and perform an initial evaluation of the case, your lawyer may:
Complete a Thorough Investigation of Your Motorcycle Accident
To successfully recover on your case your lawyer will likely need more than just the evidence and documentation you already have at the beginning.
They will likely complete an investigation of their own and may:
- Visit the scene of your motorcycle accident (if doing so can be helpful)
- Seek video footage of your accident
- Obtain witness accounts of the collision
- Retain experts to reconstruct your accident or diagnose injuries
- Acquire any other evidence that is relevant to your accident or injuries
Your attorney will use this information to determine liability and estimate damages after their investigation. They will name the responsible parties as defendants in your insurance claim or lawsuit.
Identify and Calculate Your Damages
Your attorney will help develop a proof of your losses. Medical bills lost income, and records from visits with doctors and other treatment providers for your injuries are all relevant parts of your case.
Your recoverable damages include losses like:
- Repairs for your motorcycle
- Medical and other treatment expenses
- Physical pain and suffering
- Lost income
- Emotional distress
You may also recover damages if you lost a close family member in a motorcycle accident.
Start Settlement Discussions with the At-Fault Party
Your lawyer will likely initially try to negotiate a settlement with the parties responsible for the crash. Whether these parties are insurance companies, defendants, or defendants’ attorneys, your lawyer will often begin by attempting to negotiate a financial settlement for damages caused by the crash.
Settlements commonly resolve civil lawsuits or allow for lawsuits to be avoided entirely. You might receive fair compensation for your losses without stepping foot in court.
Take Your Case to Court, if Necessary
Your lawyer may advise that you file a lawsuit, or even take your case all the way through trial if a defendant fails to extend a fair settlement offer. Your lawyer should be prepared and experienced in handling trials to give your case the best chance of success.
Call an Attorney Today to Seek Justice for a Motorcycle Accident
If someone’s negligence harmed you or a loved one, hire a motorcycle accident attorney today. They’ll fight for the financial recovery you deserve.