As the summer months are upon us, an increasing amount of motorcyclists are out sharing the road with other vehicles. Motorcyclists understand the importance of being seen and heard on the road, given the size of their vehicles and the ease with which they may fit into other vehicles’ blind spots. Wearing bright colored clothing or a helmet as well as having a loud engine is helpful for increasing visibility to other drivers. Motorcycle Accidents are inevitable however, and frequently a result of cars making left hand turns at an intersection, that are either unable to see an approaching motorcyclist or correctly judge their speed.
Unfortunately, motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable to serious injuries when an accident occurs. Motorcycle accident studies have shown that when a motorcyclist is thrown to the ground or into a solid object, the force of impact to the motorcyclist is the same at high speeds as it is at low speeds. Common injuries that result from motorcycle accidents include second and third degree burns from the motorcycle engine or exhaust, spinal cord injuries, internal bleeding, brain trauma, organ damage, and broken bones. Studies have also shown that fractures to a motorcyclist’s wrists and pelvis area are extremely common. This is because a motorcyclist is inclined to use his or her hands to protect the face when falling off a bike, which leaves the wrist and hand, as well as the exposed pelvis and hip areas, particularly vulnerable to injury.
People who drive motorcycles and have been involved in motorcycle accidents should always do the following:
- Call 9-11 and report the accident.
- Photograph the scene of the accident with your mobile phone. Photograph your motorcycle and its resting position after the impact. Be sure to also photograph all other vehicles involved, as well as any other objects that may have been involved in the accident.
- Take names and contact information of all witnesses at the scene of the accident. Note their observations as to how the accident occurred. Be sure to also write down any outright admissions of guilt made at the scene, including commentary such as, “I’m sorry, I didn’t see you”.
- Photograph your helmet at the scene of the accident, and preserve it thereafter. Take care not to alter the helmet in any way. For the purposes of liability in a lawsuit, wearing a helmet proves to a jury that you were not responsible for contributing to the injuries you sustained in the accident by not wearing the proper safety gear.
- Look for surveillance cameras at or around the scene of the accident, and immediately ask for a copy of the tapes. Surveillance could prove valuable in the context of determining who the at-fault party is.
- Return to the scene of the accident and photograph any changes made to the scene, including any new traffic signs or signals.
If you or someone you know has been involved in a serious motorcycle accident, it is important to know your rights and protect them with specialized legal representation. Contact Mazin & Associates, PC today at (416) 625-2122 for a free consultation.