If you’ve been hurt in an accident while riding a motorcycle, you’ve likely experienced severe and possibly life-changing injuries. Those injuries are probably accompanied by major medical expenses that can be devastating to your family’s financial stability.
You may be wondering how you’ll be able to afford the expensive medical treatment needed to recover from your injuries, especially if you’re unable to work and are not being paid for the time you’ve missed.
The experienced Smyrna motorcycle accident lawyers of The Champion Firm, P.C. can help you seek financial compensation from the negligent parties responsible for your motorcycle crash. Contact us today by phone or online to schedule a free consultation to discuss your rights and legal options.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents in Smyrna
Motorcycle accidents are often caused by negligent drivers of vehicles who fail to share the road with motorcycles. Examples of some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- Distracted driving – When a driver takes their eyes off the road to check their cell phone, change the radio, eat or drink, talk to other passengers, apply makeup, or other non-driving tasks, they may miss sudden developments on the road and cause an accident.
- Drunk or drugged driving – Drivers who are under the influence of drugs or alcohol have difficulty making decisions and controlling their vehicles, increasing the possibility of a crash.
- Visibility issues – Because motorcycles are small, they are difficult to see. If other drivers do not keep an eye out for motorcycles, collisions may occur because drivers do not take time to notice an oncoming motorcycle.
- Lane change accidents – If a driver changes lanes without checking their mirrors and blind spots for other vehicles, they may change lanes into or in front of a motorcycle.
- Speeding – If a driver is driving too fast, they may not be able to stop suddenly, increasing the potential for a rear-end accident, which can be particularly devastating for motorcyclists.
- Aggressive driving – Drivers who weave in and out of traffic, speed, and make unsafe turns are more likely to cause an accident. Turning in front of an oncoming motorcycle can be especially devastating.
- Drowsy driving – If a driver falls asleep at the wheel, they may drift out of their lane or cause other kinds of collisions.
- Motorcycle part malfunction – Serious accidents can occur if a motorcycle part malfunctions or a motorcycle has a defective design.
- Road issues – Motorcyclists can be flung from their bikes and seriously injured by problems with the road, such as potholes, open seams, or grooved pavement, for example.
Injuries Caused by Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycle accidents often cause serious, life-threatening, and often permanent injuries to the rider. If the rider is lucky to survive, they are often faced with a catastrophic financial burden caused by medical expenses and lost wages from missing work.
Injuries suffered in motorcycle accidents often include:
- Neck and back injuries – The force of an accident can put tremendous strain on a rider’s neck and spine, potentially causing injuries ranging from disc issues to paraplegia and quadriplegia.
- Traumatic brain injuries – The impact with a vehicle and when a rider’s head hits the ground can inflict traumatic brain injuries such as concussion, brain bleeding, or coma.
- Internal organ injuries – A rider can also suffer injuries to vital organs such as the lungs, heart, liver, and stomach. Internal bleeding may also result from the impact of a motorcycle crash.
- Injuries to the extremities – A rider’s arms and legs often suffer cuts and bruises, broken bones, dislocated joints, tendon and ligament damage, torn muscles, and even amputation.
- Burns – An accident at high speeds will often cause road burns, especially when the rider isn’t wearing protective clothing. The rider may also be burned by the motorcycle’s engine and exhaust pipes.
A motorcycle accident attorney can’t undo death or injury. But we can help you recover from the financial losses of your accident and achieve some level of justice and closure for you.
Smyrna Motorcycle Safety
In a busy area such as Smyrna in the metro Atlanta area, it is important for motorcycle riders to take every reasonable precaution to ensure their own safety out on the road. Here are some steps you as a motorcycle rider can take to ensure that you remain visible to other drivers on the road and protect yourself as much as possible in the event of an accident:
- Wear a helmet – A helmet can mean the difference between life and death in an accident by protecting your brain from the most traumatic, life-threatening injuries. However, it’s important to remember that you may still be entitled to compensation from the at-fault party even if you were not wearing a helmet.
- Wear bright, protective clothing – Make sure that your clothing makes you visible in all conditions to other drivers, and that it covers your skin as much as possible to avoid burns.
- Avoid excessive speed and obey traffic laws – Just because a motorcycle is more maneuverable than a car doesn’t mean that a rider doesn’t have to observe all traffic laws. Remember that lane splitting is illegal in Georgia.
- Maintain your motorcycle – Proper maintenance of your motorcycle will avoid potential causes of accidents such as tire blowouts or brake or clutch failures.
- Avoid riding under the influence – Just as with cars and trucks, never ride a motorcycle under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Who Is at Fault for a Motorcycle Crash?
Depending on the details of your accident, potentially liable parties in your case could include:
- Other drivers
- Motorcycle and parts manufacturers
- Government entities responsible for road maintenance
In Georgia, courts apportion fault based on each party or non-parties blame for causing an accident. Under this procedure, a judge or jury will determine a percentage for each party’s responsibility for the accident. Each party is then liable for that percentage of a plaintiff’s damages.
For example, if a jury determines that a defendant driver is 90 percent responsible for an accident while the plaintiff motorcycle rider is 10 percent responsible, then the driver is responsible for paying only 90 percent of the rider’s damages. Georgia law also prevents plaintiffs from recovering damages if their fault is 50% or greater, or if the consequences of the other parties’ negligence could have been avoided.
Contact the Smyrna Motorcycle Accident Lawyers at The Champion Firm, P.C.
After suffering a motorcycle accident, your focus should be on recovering from your injuries and putting your life back together. You need the Smyrna motorcycle accident lawyers of The Champion Firm, P.C. to help with your case at this time.