Motorcycle accidents tend to be some of the most severe injuries one can sustain while driving on the roads of Pennsylvania. Not only are motorcycle accidents some of the most severe accidents on our bodies but they also have a monumental impact on our finances as well. Because of the unique nature of motorcycle accidents drivers or passengers who suffer an injury can take days, weeks, months, or even years to recover from their injury.
Whether you or someone you love are dealing with the aftermath of a motorcycle accident the attorneys at Reiff & Bily are committed to providing you with legal support and representation.
If you have been injured in a Pennsylvania motorcycle accident, please do not hesitate to call Reiff & Bily at (215) 274-0072. As an internationally and nationally renowned law firm, Jeffrey M. Reiff was included in the 2012 list of Philadelphia’s Top Rated Lawyers, and Reiff & Bily was named one of Philadelphia’s Top Rated Personal Injury Law Firms. We have a long track record of helping injured motorcyclists. We will review your case at absolutely no cost and help you understand all of your legal options.
Motorcycle Accidents in Pennsylvania
Motorcycles are not just the two-wheeled screaming machines that you think of, but motorcycles as a class of vehicles also include mopeds, mini-bikes, motor scooters, motorized tricycles, go-carts and vendor cycles. The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) publishes a report detailing accidents across the state for the previous year. The most recent report issued by PennDot sheds some light on the safety of motorcycles in the state. In 2015 there were a reported 3,508 motorcycle crashes in Pennsylvania. Overall, there was a total of 127,127 reported crashes, which includes passenger cars, light trucks, vans, SUV’s, heavy trucks, bicycles, commercial buses, school buses, and other vehicles.
Motorcycle drivers and their passengers were uniquely prone to not only severe accidents but also fatalities. While PennDot did report that the number of occupant fatalities decreased from 186 in 2014 to 179 for 2015, this number is still significant and represents a large percentage of all motorcycle accidents that end in a fatality. In fact, by the numbers, sixteen percent (16%) of all motorcycle accidents result in a fatality. In most cases or nearly ninety-five and a half percent (95.5%) the driver was sustained fatal injuries, whereas only four and a half percent (4.5%) of passengers sustained a fatal injury.
These numbers are not meant to scare you, but rather are meant to present the facts to you that driving a motorcycle can be dangerous. One of the leading causes of accidents on motorcycles is not the motorcycle driver, but rather other drivers on the road.
Top Causes for Motorcycle Accidents in Pennsylvania
Motorcycles offer their drivers a unique perspective on the road, one that most passenger cars, trucks, and SUV’s do not have. As a motorcycle driver has a largely uninhibited view of the road, they often see dangerous situations before they happen and are able to avoid them. However, motorcycle drivers are often at risk of accidents and injuries, not from their own actions, but rather because of other drivers on the road. Some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- Cars making a left-hand turn – Cars making a left hand turn in front of a motorcycle are the most common motorcycle accident. These accidents occur when the car’s driver fails to see a motorcycle and or they judge their speed as compared to yours incorrectly.
- Cars changing lanes into you – This situation happens when the driver fails to adequately inspect their surroundings before changing lanes or when they wholly fail to signal that they are changing lanes. Motorcycle drivers should be aware of cars, trucks, and other vehicles’ blind spots and attempt to avoid driving in these areas for an extended period of time.
- Rear-end accident – These accidents are fairly common when you come to a stop at a stop sign, crosswalk, or intersection. These accidents frequently occur when the driver behind you is not paying attention and fails to brake before they hit you.
According to the Insurance Information Institute, in 2014, motorcyclists were 27 times more likely than passenger cars occupants to be involved in a fatal crash, and were five times more likely to be injured in an accident. If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident because of another driver, the attorneys at Reiff & Bily are here to help.
Holding Negligent Drivers Accountable
When you are involved in an accident, you often feel that you are the victim. This is especially true in motorcycle accidents where other drivers cause an overwhelming amount of accidents. An important part of the personal injury claims process is proving who caused the accident. Examples of negligent driver behavior include speeding, driving drunk, failing to obey a traffic signal, failing to yield the right of way, making dangerous lane changes, tailgating, and driving distracted. These are all negligent acts that can cause Pennsylvania motorcycle accidents. There are many motorcycle crashes, however, in which the motorcyclist shares at least partial responsibility for the collision. In such cases, compensation may still be available through civil litigation.
Getting Fair Compensation With an Experienced Pennsylvania Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
It is important to consult with an attorney when determining the value of your claim. Did you miss work? Did you need surgery? Were you hospitalized? Have your injuries affected your quality of life? Will you ever be able to return to work in full capacity? All of these questions must be answered before you request compensation from the insurance provider of the at-fault driver.