Motorcyclists are roughly 29 times more likely to die in an accident than drivers and passengers of larger vehicles. In a motorcycle vs. car collision, occupants of the enclosed car have a serious safety advantage over the motorcyclist. Riders who want to enjoy the many benefits of open air travel need to practice safe riding habits and proactive bike maintenance. But even if a motorcyclist does everything in their power to ride safely, the negligent actions of another driver can rob them of their health or even life. The job of a Lewisburg motorcycle accident lawyer is to protect victims of this type of negligence in central Pennsylvania.
At Stapp Law, LLC, we practice personal injury law in Lewisburg, PA, and the surrounding areas in Union County. We have decades of experience representing motorcycle crash victims who were injured in accidents caused by another party’s negligence. If you were harmed in an accident you did not cause, you may be eligible to receive compensation for the losses you suffered. A motorcycle accident attorney from Stapp Law, LLC is available for a free consultation to discuss the legal actions you may be entitled to take.
What Are Common Causes of a Motorcycle Accident?
There were 3,227 motorcyclists injured in Pennsylvania last year—a nearly 13% increase over the previous year. And during the same year, 217 individuals lost their lives in motorcycle accidents—almost 25% more deaths than the year before. There are a number of ways that motorcycles are more vulnerable than the larger vehicles sharing the roads with them. The size of a motorcycle makes it more difficult for other drivers to see and avoid. A two-wheel vehicle like a motorcycle has less stability than other passenger vehicles. And when collisions do occur, a motorcycle is able to offer its rider little to no protection against the impact.
Anyone who rides knows the catastrophic injuries that can result when a motorcycle crashes. Traumatic brain injury (TBI), concussions, spinal cord injury, broken bones, amputations, permanent scarring, road rash (first, second, or third degree road rash), and, too often, wrongful death can result. While motorcycles were involved in only 3% of motor vehicle wrecks in PA last year, over 20% of all traffic collision deaths were motorcyclists.
The number one cause of motorcyclist injury and fatality is passenger vehicle driver error. A high percentage of motorcycle accidents occur due to some kind of driver mistake, wrongdoing, or carelessness that puts a motorcyclist at risk, such as:
- Speeding or driving too fast for conditions
- Reckless or aggressive driving
- Failing to spot a motorcycle when turning or merging into traffic
- Changing lanes unsafely and not checking blind spots
- Failure to yield
- Running a red light
- Not using turn signals
- Sudden stops and braking too sharply
- Illegal or irresponsible left-hand turns
- Opening a car door in front of an oncoming motorcycle
- Texting and driving or other distracted driving
- Drunk or impaired driving
In other instances, another factor may primarily cause or contribute to the cause of a motorcycle accident. It may be that a seemingly-uninvolved party is liable for the wreck, such as when a negligent motorcycle parts manufacturer produces a faulty product that fails on the road. Sometimes inadequate road maintenance leads to a crash. Pennsylvania’s comparative negligence law recognizes that there may be more than one at-fault party. Experienced motorcycle accident lawyers know that there are numerous factors that can lead to a wreck. These can include:
- Adverse weather conditions and slippery surfaces
- Road debris, uneven surfaces, loose gravel, potholes, or other road hazards
- Unmaintained or poorly-designed roads
- Defective vehicle parts or design flaws
- Too-sharp turns
- Dangerous motorcyclist behavior like road splitting
Most riders recognize the unique vulnerability of their two-wheel vehicle, and they practice abundant preventative maintenance and caution when sharing the road with larger vehicles. But drinking and driving continues to be a major safety issue endangering the lives of thousands of drivers and riders in Pennsylvania each year. Compared to other types of vehicle drivers, motorcyclists in PA have the largest percentage of drinking drivers to total drivers involved in an alcohol-related accident. This means that when a motorcycle is involved in a drunk driving crash, it’s usually the motorcyclist who was drinking.
Driving under the influence endangers the lives of our local residents in Lewisburg, PA, and as motorcycle accident attorneys, we at Stapp Law, LLC advocate actively for road safety for everyone. An important step in personal injury law is determining negligence after an accident.
One of the responsibilities of a qualified motorcycle crash lawyer is to thoroughly analyze the circumstances and conditions that led to the crash. This tells us who was at fault, and who should be held accountable for the actions that harmed others. From there, we can determine how the victim’s life was altered and the amount and type of damages they should recover.
How Can a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Help After a Crash?
In personal injury cases, motorcycle accident law is its own area of auto accident law because of the many specific elements that are unique to motorcycle collisions. Motorcycle accident lawyers need to understand motorcycle licensing and vehicle specification regulations, traffic laws, and rules regarding vehicle inspection. Additionally, the mechanics of riding a motorcycle make for different crash dynamics than a car vs. car collision. As motorcycle crash attorneys, we know that understanding elements like vehicle dynamics and rider dynamics is central to finding out what happened and how the rider was physically impacted.
We have well over 800,000 licensed motorcyclists in the state of Pennsylvania. At Stapp Law, LLC, we do all we can to protect even a small percentage of these PA riders from suffering the consequences of another party’s irresponsibility. When you partner with a Lewisburg motorcycle accident lawyer from our law firm, you know that you have a competent, experienced, and compassionate advocate on your team. We care deeply about the safety of our Lewisburg community members, and we use our legal expertise to fight for every client we serve.
If you were injured in a motorcycle accident and are considering filing a personal injury claim against the party that caused your injury, we encourage you to begin with a free consultation to discuss your legal options with a motorcycle accident attorney from our firm.