The 10 Most Common Motorcycle Accidents
In Georgia, motorcycle accidents make up a substantial portion of the state's fatal traffic accidents each year. According to the Georgia Governor's Office of Highway Safety (GOHS), motorcycles were involved in 11 percent of all fatal traffic accidents in 2019. Additionally, motorcyclists comprised 21 percent of all traffic accidents that involved driver fatalities. Such numbers are alarming given that motorcycles only make up 2 percent of all registered vehicles in Georgia. Because of the nature of motorcycles – that they are unprotected vehicles – any accident can be fatal, even if a motorcyclist is wearing a helmet.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries or losses in a motorcycle accident in Georgia, you have limited time to find out what legal options may be available to you. To discuss your legal options with a Columbus, Georgia motorcycle accident lawyer, contact The Mark Casto Law Firm, P.C. today. The 10 most common motorcycle accidents and their causes are listed below.
No. 1 – Rear-End Collisions
Rear-end collisions involving a motorcycle and another vehicle are extremely common, and often result in serious injuries. A sudden stop can cause a motorcyclist to be thrown across the road or highway, exposing the motorcyclist to further harm from oncoming vehicles.
No. 2 – Lane Splitting
It is not uncommon to see motorcyclists riding between lanes rather than passing vehicles in a passing lane. Although allowed in some states, traveling between lanes, or “lane splitting,” is illegal in Georgia and most other states. Lane splitting is a common cause of motorcycle accidents that is preventable.
No. 3 – Collision with Fixed Object
Motorcycles can reach very high rates of speed and stopping suddenly can be difficult and dangerous for a motorcyclist. When a motorcyclist loses control and is unable to safely stop, he or she may be unable to avoid striking a fixed object, such as a parked car, a light pole, or even a building.
No. 4 – Speeding
Speeding is a contributing factor in many motor vehicle accidents in Georgia. When speeding is involved in a motorcycle accident – whether the vehicle speeding is a motorcycle or another vehicle – the consequential injuries can be severe and permanent.
No. 5 – Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs
Operating under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol creates a substantial risk that an accident may occur. A motorcyclist involved in a driving under the influence (DUI) accident may be in the wrong place at the wrong time, falling victim to an oncoming vehicle operated by an impaired driver.
No. 6 – Left-Turn Collisions
Left-turn collisions involving motorcycles is much more common than accidents involving right-turns. Because motorcycles are small vehicles, they are less visible to other motorists. When turning left, motorcyclists are often placed in harm's way as some oncoming vehicles fail to yield, leading to a potentially fatal accident.
No. 7 – Driver/Motorcyclist Inexperience
Inexperience operating a motor vehicle is a recipe for an accident. Inexperienced drivers and motorcyclists may not have the necessary judgment to make swift decisions when changing, lanes, turning, and coming to a stop. Any misjudgment can quickly turn into a catastrophic motorcycle accident.
No. 8 – Distracted Driving
Texting has become the cause of catastrophic motorcycle accidents in recent years as smartphones are linked to fatal motorcycle accidents in Georgia and elsewhere across the nation. Texting and other forms of distracted driving remain a major concern in Georgia despite stricter “hands-free” laws concerning the use of a phone while operating a motor vehicle.
No. 9 – Unsafe Lane Changes
Motorcycles are small enough that they may be in a driver's blind spot when riding alongside another vehicle. As such, many motorcyclists become accident victims when vehicles turn into them without warning.
No. 10 – Poor Weather Conditions
Some accidents are not caused by negligent conduct. Georgia sees varying weather conditions throughout the year, and even one bad rainstorm could spell trouble for motorcyclists. Poor weather conditions, such as rain, wind (including tornadoes), snow, and hail, among others, contribute to numerous motorcycle accidents each year in Georgia.
Does Georgia Require Motorcyclists to Wear Helmets?
Yes. Under Georgia Code Section 40-6-315, all motorcyclists and passengers (of all ages) must wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle. Additionally, the type of helmet, which is referred to as “headgear” in the Georgia statute, must comply with “standards established by the commissioner of Public Safety.” For questions about Georgia's traffic laws, especially as they pertain to motorcyclists, consider speaking with The Mark Casto Law Firm, P.C. today.
How a Columbus, Georgia Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Can Help You
While the 10 most common motorcycle accidents may all occur in the state of Georgia, motorcycle riders may not know their legal rights and options after an accident. All too often, victims of motor vehicle accidents settle claims with insurance companies for amounts that do not reflect the true suffering resulting from accident injuries. Motorcycle accident injuries can be catastrophic, ending careers and changing one's way of life forever. Seeking justice is about more than receiving compensation, and it is important for all motorcycle accident victims to learn all of their legal options to ensure their rights remain protected.
If you suffered injuries and losses in a motorcycle accident as a result of someone else's negligence, you may have legal options for seeking compensation. Working with insurance companies can be difficult, and it is not uncommon for accident victims to receive low settlement packages from insurance companies.
With decades of experience and success, The Mark Casto Law Firm, P.C. represents the rights and interests of clients who have suffered horrific and debilitating personal injuries at the expense of another's negligent conduct. To schedule your free consultation to discuss a potential motorcycle accident personal injury claim, contact The Mark Casto Law Firm, P.C. today by calling (706) 940-4030.