Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries
Written by AskTheLawyers.com™ on behalf of Phillip Chupik with Metier Law Firm.
Motorcycle accident injuries can be particularly catastrophic compared with those of standard vehicle accidents; this is primarily due to the lack of exterior protection afforded to motorcycles. Without a hard outer shell, seatbelt, and airbags to mitigate the risk of injury in case of an accident, wiping out on a motorcycle is almost guaranteed to result in injuries ranging from minor to severe and even fatal. Wearing proper protective gear including Department of Transportation (DOT) approved helmets is a good way to mitigate some of this risk, but regardless some injuries are more common than not in motorcycle accidents.
If you or a loved one were injured or killed in a motorcycle accident, you may be eligible to file a personal injury or wrongful death claim. Motorcycle cases can be particularly challenging due to an inherent bias against motorcyclists on the part of jurors; this is why it is imperative to find an experienced motorcycle accident to take your case after being injured in a motorcycle crash.
Injuries that are unfortunately common in motorcycle accidents include but are not limited to the following:
- Road rash
- Cracked or broken ribs
- Broken bones
- Head injuries
- Facial fractures
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Spinal cord injuries (SCIs)
- Permanent disability
Even an injury that sounds as mild as road rash can range in its severity. Some cases of road rash may require skin grafts to heal. Additionally, even minor accidents can result in fatalities, particularly when head injuries are involved. This is why a DOT helmet is considered the most essential piece of protective equipment a rider can wear.
Motorcyclists seeking compensation often face bias.
It is important to note that seeking compensation after a motorcycle accident is unique from other kinds of accident cases. If a fair settlement is not reached outside of court and the matter goes to trial, jurors often carry a bias against motorcyclists when deciding who is or isn’t liable for an accident.
Many people operate under the assumption that motorcyclists are more reckless than other types of drivers; therefore, they are more likely to place the blame with the motorcyclist than the driver of a standard vehicle. This is why it is helpful to rely on the experience of a motorcycle accident attorney who will know how to communicate effectively with the jury on your behalf.
Settlements and verdicts regarding motorcycle cases are often higher due to the severity of the damages.
Motorcycle injuries tend to be more severe than not; this results in higher medical bills, more time off work, and other expenses such as physical and other therapeutic needs before returning to normal life. Pain and suffering is another significant damage to consider in these cases, as motorcycle injuries can be extremely painful and require a long period of recovery. These expenses are considered damages, all of which and more can be sought in a successful motorcycle accident case.
Even if you are partially at fault, you may still be eligible to receive compensation for your damages.
Depending on the state, you may be eligible to seek compensation for some of your damages even if you believe you might have been partially at fault for the accident. In states that practice comparative negligence, a motorcyclist considered to be partially at fault for an accident can still receive compensation; generally that compensation is awarded in an amount reduced by the same percentage of fault they are decided to have for the accident. Colorado, for example, practices modified comparative negligence, in which comparative negligence applies unless a party is decided to be 50% or more responsible for the accident, in which case they forfeit all right to compensation.
It is important to refrain from admitting or discussing fault with anyone other than your attorney. Even something as simple as a blanket apology could later be used against you as an admission of fault. To learn more about your options for physical and financial recovery after a motorcycle accident, reach out to a motorcycle accident attorney.