Accident attorney, injury attorney: Motorcycle accidents explained.
Safe riding techniques in this article is based on three+ decades of safely riding motorcycles as a professional rider. My professional riding career includes Chief Motorcycle Instructor at advanced motorcycle instruction level – police trained and continually assessed, advanced instruction at basic level, intermediate level and at on road advanced instruction level. Advanced level Examiner.
As a direct consequence of motorcyclists having to share major and minor roadways from extremely busy and intensely ever-changing scene of major city roadways and interstate highways, to the less busy, even though it can be said, less dangerous miniscule minor rural small towns of our increasing busy high mobile society, the resulting mix of large, larger and small fast moving vehicles can be a traumatic and at times deadly combination of road traffic conflicts for the most experienced and uninitiated adult and vulnerable teen motorcyclist – the unprotected motorcyclist is especially vulnerable in this fast paced and the most likely to fair the worst in any vehicle and motorcyclist collision.
Accidents involving motorcycles can, and do, cause massive physical, psychological trauma and intense debilitating life changing injuries, which will remain disabling and devastating not only for the injured person, but will have an adverse affect on the basic lifestyle nuclear family, for the extended family, close and not so close friends.
Riding your very own motorcycle on the highways is nearly every child’s dream; fortunately, dreams do not portray the terrifying pain, the suffering, the sheer terror and the feeling of hopelessness when dependent on the convalescing and care of loved ones, when the reality of the debilitating life threatening and life changing injuries suffered immediately following a serious motorcycle accident especially when involving multiple vehicles. Despite the popularity of motorcycling especially in the summer months, the inherent nature of motorcycles makes being in control of them a potentially dangerous undertaking equally for the most professionally trained and the complete novice, the complete novice riding a motorcycle can be a lethal combination with devastating injuries received in a very short riding career (Grayson, Maycock, Groeger, Hammond & Field, 2003), this commentator researched this subject and concluded that and inexperienced motorcyclists hazard perception was non existent and in most situations involved in serious road traffic accidents and receiving serious injuries within a very period – time scale, of passing the relevant Riding Test.
Analyses of serious and debilitating accidents involving inexperienced motorcyclist collated in motorcycle crash data, were primarily undertaken in an attempt to assess the motorcycle crash data and therefore identify those actual and potential hazards and identify potentially dangerous situations that pose and create an actual and potential crash risk for motorcyclists of different levels of experience. However, actual road-based hazards were rarely recorded and the differences in motorcycle crash situations appeared to largely reflect patterns of motorcycle riding, rather than intrinsic assessment of risk (Grayson, Maycock, Groeger, Hammond & Field, 2003).
The research statistical data identified very little detectable research into inexperienced motorcyclist’s hazard perception and correct hazard response by motorcycle riders. For auto car drivers, research has shown that experienced drivers are quicker to detect potential and actual hazards and that slower responses to potential hazards are associated with higher self-reported motorcycle crash involvement – but this has not been tested for motorcycle riders, (RTA. Motorcycle safety. Issues and countermeasures (2004)).
While research has shown that actual and potential hazard perception training in novice motorcycle riders leads to vastly improved hazard awareness performance on recorded hazard perception tests, it is not yet known whether these riders go on to be safer motorcycle riders and have therefore suffer fewer accidents. Intensive hazard awareness training in how to correctly respond safely and appropriately may be more critical for motorcycle riders than for automobile drivers because failures in responding to actual and potential danger may result in a failure to avoid the initial actual hazard or a different type of dangerous crash, (McKenna, F.P., & Crick, J.L. (1997).
While there has been intensive and extensive statistical research into actual potential hazard perception by car auto drivers since about 1990, realistically there have been relatively few research studies having to measure actual and potential hazard perception and responding by motorcyclists. For car drivers, extensive research has shown that experienced drivers are definitely quicker to detect potential hazards and that slower responses are associated with higher self-reported crash involvement - but this has not been tested for motorcycle riders.
Armsby, Boyle & Wright (1989) confirmed a reported study that sought to compare the effectiveness of differing techniques for assessing car drivers’ perceptions of approaching hazards using three different types of interview methods, the Q-sort technique and several variants of the repertory grid method. All participants held a full driving license. Regardless of whether nondirective, focussed or critical incident interviews were conducted, over 70% of the potential hazards mentioned by car drivers with no motorcycle riding experience arose from the behaviour of other road users, rather than features of the road environment. Car drivers who also rode (or previously ridden) motorcycles, however, were able to correctly identify specific potential hazardous features of the road, and specific actions of other road users, as potential hazards to motorcyclists. They conclude that “this might be expected, given that motorcyclists are more at risk from physical deficiencies in the road environment, such as a wet road surface with low skid resistance, and potentially more vulnerable to serious injury if they are involved in an auto accident” (p.56).
In the United Kingdom, Horswill and Helman (2001) conducted an intense and revealing series of research studies that attempted to assess the relative contributions of motorcycle rider behaviour and car driver behaviour towards the physical presence of motorcycles and the physical vulnerability of motorcycles to the increased crash and injury rates of motorcycles compared to cars. Their first study compared the performance of three specific groups:
• Car drivers who had no (or almost no) riding experience
• Motorcycle riders who were asked to respond as if they were riding their normal motorcycle
• Motorcycle riders who were asked to respond as if they were driving their usual car.
The three distinct groups were exactly matched in terms of age, gender, total distance travelled per year and the exact proportion having successfully undergone advanced training methods courses. The average age was approximately 40 years, there were more males than females and about 45 percent had undertaken advanced training methods courses.
The all participants completed a sequence of video-based tests of actual driving behaviour and performance in the Reading University driving vehicle simulator. The actual participants were asked to correctly respond as if they were driving their own car, sat in a car mock-up (with seat, steering wheel, and pedals mounted on a platform). In addition, the motorcycle participants were asked to respond as if they were riding their usual motorcycle, sitting on a Suzuki B120 motorcycle mounted in a stabilising frame. Digital video stimuli were presented on the back projection screen and, where appropriate, active participants responded to real time events on the video with a hand-held button (which allowed reaction times to events to be measured). In the terms used in this paper, the study measured potential and actual hazard perception, but not the response selection or execution components of hazard perception and responding.
On McKenna and Crick’s (1994) hazard perception test, motorcyclists responding as if they were driving their normal cars reacted faster to hazardous situations than either car drivers or motorcyclists responding as if they were riding their normal motorcycles. This would suggest that motorcyclists had better hazard perception skills than car drivers. Given that the hazard perception test was intended for car drivers, the researchers argue that some of the hazards might be less relevant for motorcyclists and that this might explain why this group did not perform as well on motorcycles as they did in cars.
If you or a family member have received injuries in a motorcycle accident, it is critical to take certain steps and safeguard you claim, in addition to contacting an attorney, to protect your legal rights and assist you to build your case for full recovery of damages for injuries and harm. If the police arrived at the accident scene, give them only basic information such as your name and address and the relevant facts about the accident. Do not under any circumstances admit blame or fault for the accident. Immediately after the accident, seek immediate medical assistance if needed and keep your medical records for future reference. In addition, keep all receipts and invoices related to medical treatment and consultation fees, and keep evidence of any other expenses related to your accident, such as repair expenses, rental vehicle costs and wages lost because of missed work. All of this information is directly relevant to the final calculation of actual damages.
If you are able to do so, contact – talk, to other drivers or pedestrians who witnessed the accident. At the very least, try to write down their names and phone numbers before they leave the scene. If possible take a snapshot of the damages and registration details, if relevant of the driver – in case it’s a stolen vehicle or uninsured, with your mobile/cell phone camera. While some witnesses may wait for the police to arrive and to offer their information, others may leave before the police arrive, so it is important to have their contact information for reference. In addition, exchange names, addresses, telephone numbers and insurance information with the driver(s) of the other vehicle(s) involved in the accident. As soon after the accident as possible, take photographs of the scene to record evidence and the actual road conditions. Photographs of your injuries and damage to your motorcycle or other property are also important to have.
Depending on your situation, it may be necessary to engage expert witnesses to assist with building your case. Experts in crash reconstruction or motorcycle mechanics should be able to assist with determining the exact cause of the crash and the defendant's potential fault.
If you claim a negligence action with an accident attorney, accident lawyer against another driver, the driver may argue that your own negligence in the accident was at least partly responsible for your motorcycle accident injuries. The doctrine of comparative negligence is likely to reduce or even limit your financial recovery fees if you are found to be partly at fault for your injuries received. In states that have adopted a "pure" comparative negligence rule, all injured parties whose negligence is not the only proximate cause of the injuries, can recover an amount that is reduced by his or her proportionate share of fault. In states that have adopted an "equal to or greater than" rule of comparative negligence, the injured party's fault is not a bar to recovery of fees if his or her negligence is not as great as the negligence of the defendant, with a reduction in damages proportionate to his or her degree of fault.
If as a motorcyclist you were involved in a traumatic and debilitating road accident, or aware of a family member, a loved one, or a valued friend, who received injuries, harm either physical or psychological - through a motorcycle related accident, then find a local accident attorney , a local accident lawyer free, or a local injury lawyer free. Complete Attorney Index website is a regularly updated local accident and injury attorney directory, where you choose and freely contact, your local injury attorney, a local injury lawyer, without abusing your right of Freedom to Choose the accident attorney that is suitable for your needs. Complete Attorney Index website is not a law firm introducer or pre-selection law firm directory for local injury attorney or local injury lawyer or receives financial backing or kickbacks of any kind, receive neither payments from any nation wide, state wide nor local injury attorneys, local accident lawyers. Your Freedom of Choice is your protected right – Complete Attorney Index website if intensely independent and intensely unbiased. You search and contact with no introductions whatsoever – exercise you freedom to choose Search Now! Find local personal injury attorney free. Find local personal injury lawyer free.Offer you an unbiased local injury attorney or local accident lawyer search directory.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
I am a mature family orientated male living a traditional family lifestyle. I have worked in various employment positions and the current position is in a Youth Offending Team as Project Manager of an extremely busy City Youth Offending Team, thus providing needs based supportive packages - education, leisure, befriending and support.