It's not really shocking to learn that motorcycles are much more dangerous than cars. Considering that riding a motorcycle in the open air offers minimal protection in an accident, motorcycle riders usually suffer more serious injuries than victims of a car accident.
While there are ways for motorcycle riders to reduce the risk of injury, they do carry higher risks. Understanding the distinctions between motorcycle and auto accidents will help everyone understand how to cooperate to make the roads safer.
Below, we will discuss the differences further. However, if you've been injured in a motorcycle or car accident and have questions, consult with our team at Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney at Law. We can provide insight and give you valuable advice about what you should do next.
The Main Differences Between Motorcycle and Auto Accidents
Riding a motorcycle carries risks that are far different from those of driving a standard car. Because a motorcycle only has two wheels, it is less stable. Riders are more likely to be ejected from their bikes in the case of an accident because there aren't any seat belts or an outdoor protective enclosure.
The vehicle's smaller size also makes it less visible to other drivers. All drivers are expected to be alert of other vehicles around them, thus failing to properly check for motorcycles at an intersection or a stop sign or when changing lanes could result in someone driving a car being held accountable for a wrongful death.
Motorcycle & Auto Accident Statistics
While motorcycles seem to pose a greater danger for accidents due to their evident features, it is often questioned if bikers actually collide with vehicles more. Let's examine some stats that demonstrate the significance of motorcycle safety:
- Motorcycles make up just 3% of all vehicles on the road, but they are responsible for 14% of all reported vehicle fatalities.
- Bicyclists, pedestrians, and motorcycle riders account for more than half of all reported traffic fatalities.
- When accounting for per-vehicle miles driven in 2020, the number of fatal motorcycle accidents was about 28 times higher than the number of fatal automobile occupant accidents.
Typical Reasons For Car and Motorcycle Accidents
There are certain similarities for the most common causes of both motorcycle and car accidents, despite the fact that they are designed and operated in quite different ways.
Instead of a vehicle's mechanical design, negligence and recklessness on the part of the driver are typically the main causes of all accidents. Accidents involving motorcycles and cars are usually attributed to the following reasons:
- Distracted drivin
- Driving while intoxicated
- Breaking traffic laws
However, there are many other things that lead to accidents. Technical issues with a car or motorcycle, like faulty brakes, might also result in a collision. Anybody who drives needs to be on the lookout for dangerous road conditions as another issue. The following list are other motorcycle-specific reasons why an accident may happen.
- Speeding. Although speeding is one of the major factors in motorcycle accidents, riders are not always to blame. Speeding increases the likelihood that a driver won't spot a smaller bike in their lane, which is why drivers of cars frequently collide with motorcycle riders when they are speeding.
- Limited visibility. Another element in motorcycle accidents is poor visibility. Simply put, a motorcycle is less conspicuous, which causes vehicles to crash into them as they turn or change lanes. Motorcycle riders can improve their visibility by wearing a half-shell helmet in a vivid color.
- Lane splitting. Although lane splitting is a topic many people agree or disagree with among riders, it can result in a crash when a car driver fails to notice someone in their path.
How Motorcycle Accident Claims and Car Accident Claims Differ
This happens more times than not. Drivers, insurance providers, and lawyers all fail to distinguish between motorcycle accident claims and auto accident claims.
The truth is that while motorcycle riders must abide by the same traffic laws as a driver of a car, they must also have specific safety equipment and licenses, which vary by state. In order to establish that a motorcycle rider is entitled to compensation in personal injury claims, a completely new set of standards and deadlines must be met. A motorcycle rider's injury claim being denied could be caused by anything from prejudice to a lack of sufficient evidence.
Important distinctions between each are as follows:
- Seriousness of Motorcycle Injuries: A motorcycle rider is entirely exposed, in contrast to drivers of cars. As a result, motorcycle accidents often result in far more severe bodily harm than car accidents, with injuries being as serious as brain trauma, 2nd or 3rd degree burns, and muscle injury.
- Proving Fault: Motorcycle riders must establish beyond a reasonable doubt that they were not at fault for an accident in order to be eligible for any type of compensation. For motorcycle riders, this could be more difficult than for car drivers.
- Unfair Bias: Unfortunately, there are preconceived notions about motorcycle riders among police, judges and insurance companies. This can impact important issues involving a motorcycle rider's injury claim. This is a very important reason why a lawyer should be retained who is knowledgeable about motorcycle injury cases.
Consult With Brandon J. Broderick If You've Been In a Motorcycle Accident
Even if you take all the necessary precautions as a motorcycle rider or driver of a motor vehicle, there's always the risk that you may be involved in an accident and even be injured. The risk is greater for those riding a motorcycle. If you have been involved in an accident and need help, we are here for you.
Contact the motorcycle accident lawyers at Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney At Law. We have years of experience handling motorcycle accidents, and have a solid track record of success.
Call today to schedule an appointment to talk to our lawyers for a free case evaluation.