St. Louis Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Riding a motorcycle is a thrill unlike anything else you’ll ever experience. Unfortunately, motorcycles are inherently more dangerous than passenger vehicles, due to their open design and the minimal crash protection offered to riders. In 2017, motorcycle accidents led to over 5,000 fatalities. More than 80% of motorcycle crashes cause injury or death.
Drivers of passenger vehicles do little to make the roads safer for motorcyclists. At best, drivers are unaware of how to drive safely around motorcyclists. At worst, they are intentionally reckless.
In many situations, liability for an accident can be traced back to a driver’s negligent or reckless decisions. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident caused by someone else, learn more about your legal options now. Call Finney Injury Law at 314-293-4222 to schedule your free consultation with a St. Louis personal injury trial lawyer.
Dangers of Motorcycle Accidents
As a motorcyclist, you likely know that riders are at higher risk of serious injury or death during a crash than those in a passenger vehicle. During a motorcycle crash, riders are not protected by a steel frame and they are often thrown from their bike, increasing their risk of suffering severe injuries. Some of the most common injuries that occur during motorcycle crashes include:
- Concussions and other types of traumatic brain injuries. Traumatic brain injuries vary widely in severity and prognosis. While one accident victim could be left with a concussion that heals without intervention in less than a week, another victim could suffer damage that leaves them unable to communicate or move independently for the rest of their life.
- Nerve damage. Nerve damage is particularly common in the upper arms, which could leave to permanent arm paralysis.
- Road rash. When a rider is thrown from a motorcycle, sliding along the pavement often causes road rash. In addition to being extremely painful, road rash can cause permanent disfigurement of the skin on the face or body.
- Infection caused by abrasions. Road rash increases the risk of infection after a crash. Infection is particularly common when a substantial amount of skin is covered by abrasions.
- Joint damage. Some crashes cause damage to the joints, shoulders, and pelvis. Depending on the severity of the crash, this damage could permanently limit an individual’s mobility or independence.
- Broken bones. Being thrown from a motorcycle puts riders at major risk of broken bones. While some breaks are relatively minor and heal in a matter of weeks, others can leave victims out of work for months.
The majority of motorcycle crashes are multi-vehicle crashes. Both drivers and motorcyclists play a role in decreasing accident rates and making roads safer for riders.
How Drivers Can Prevent Motorcycle Accidents
Drivers pose serious threats to riders. These tips can help drivers of passenger vehicles and commercial vehicles avoid motorcycle accidents:
- Avoid distractions. Drivers distracted by passengers, loud music, or mobile devices are more likely to cause accidents than drivers who are focused on the road. Having your eyes off the road for even a fraction of a second could cause you to drift in front of a motorcyclist or collide with a motorcyclist ahead of you.
- Give extra room to motorcycles. Drivers often struggle to judge a rider’s speed and location accurately. As a precaution, give motorcycles extra space when navigating near them.
- Slow down while driving around motorcycles. Simply slowing down around motorcycles can make the roads safer for riders., What could be a minor and inconvenient accident for a passenger vehicle driver could be fatal for a motorcyclist.
- Pay attention while entering intersections. Many crashes involving passenger vehicles and motorcycles occur at intersections. Drivers may misjudge a rider’s speed and enter the intersection before it is safe to do so. When in doubt, wait to enter the intersection.
What Motorcyclists Can Do to Stay Safe?
Following a few key safety tips can minimize your risk of being involved in a motorcycle accident:
- Wear your helmet. Even if you are riding in a state where helmet use is not mandatory, wear your helmet every time you ride to prevent fatal head injuries.
- Make sure you are visible. Many accidents occur because drivers cannot see motorcyclists. Stay visible by staying out of cars’ blind spots, wearing bright colors, and using your headlights.
- Travel at a safe speed. The temptation to speed is high on a sunny day when you’re enjoying a ride but dropping your speed just a few miles per hour can reduce your risk of an accident.
Steps to Take After a Motorcycle Accident
If you are involved in a motorcycle accident, taking the right steps can help you seek compensation and document the crash. Follow these steps:
- Contact the police. Report the accident and request an ambulance if anyone is seriously injured and needs immediate care.
- Swap contact information. You should exchange contact and insurance information with all other drivers involved in the crash. If anyone witnessed the crash, make sure you get their contact information as well.
- If possible, takes photos and video documentation of the scene. If you are not too injured to begin collecting evidence, make sure you take photos and video footage of the crash scene. The scene will be cleaned up promptly and available evidence will disappear if not properly documented.
- Seek medical care. Injuries may take days to show up, so it is essential to get a full medical examination as soon as possible after a crash.
- Reach out to a St. Louis motorcycle accident lawyer. The expenses of a motorcycle accident add up quickly. You need a motorcycle accident attorney to represent you as you seek compensation.
Why You Need a Personal Injury Trial Attorney After a Motorcycle Crash
Riders face an uphill battle while trying to get a fair settlement after a motorcycle accident. Insurance companies are often quick to push the blame onto riders and offer far less than they deserve. Unless you have experience playing hardball with insurance companies, you run the risk of losing your settlement entirely if you deal with them directly. With the assistance of the team at Finney Injury Law, you know that you have an advocate willing to fight aggressively for a fair settlement. Insurance adjusters know that a personal injury trial attorney is not afraid to take a case to court, which puts them at risk of paying out even more. Having an attorney on your side can lead to a higher settlement and a much faster claim resolution.
Contact Finney Injury Law Today
Serving clients in the St. Louis area, Finney Injury Law has a long track record of favorable settlements and trial outcomes. A motorcycle crash can leave you out of work, mounting medical bills, and property damage—if someone else is responsible for your accident, we believe they should be held accountable. Schedule your free consultation now by calling us at 314-293-4222 or filling out our online contact form.