Motorcycle accidents cause more serious injuries or deaths than other accident types. According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), motorcycle riders were 27 times more likely to die in an accident than those in passenger vehicles.
Along with increased danger on the road, motorcycle riders face unfair biases. Many drivers assume bikers are at fault for motorcycle accidents. However, it surprises many people to learn who’s at fault in most motorcycle crashes.
The Truth About Fault in Motorcycle Accidents
When someone’s negligence leads to an accident, that person is at fault. The negligent driver is legally liable for the accident damages, according to the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA) §51-1-6. If you were injured in an accident, you can seek compensation from the at-fault driver.
Many drivers assume that motorcycle riders are reckless or careless on the road. But the facts say something different. Truthfully, most motorcycle accidents happen because of another driver’s actions. A car or truck driver is more likely to be at fault for a motorcycle-related crash.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), most multi-vehicle motorcycle accidents happen when another driver doesn’t see a motorcycle rider. For example, a driver might fail to see a motorcycle at an intersection and cause a collision.
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Top Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
Like any auto crash, motorcycle accidents can occur for many reasons. However, here are some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents with other vehicles.
The majority of motorcycle accidents involve other drivers. Most of the time, the crash is a head-on collision. The other driver hits the motorcycle from the front.
While rear-end collisions do happen with motorcycle riders, they are much less common. Tragically, head-on accidents are often fatal to motorcyclists. Motorcycles do not have as much protection as cars or trucks during an accident.
Left-Hand Turn Accidents
Motorcycle accidents are also common when another driver is making a left turn. These crashes often occur when:
- A motorcycle rider is trying to pass a driver turning left
- A driver makes a left-hand turn at an intersection and doesn’t see an oncoming motorcyclist
- A motorcycle rider is overtaking a driver who is turning left
Since motorcycle bikes are smaller than other vehicles, they’re harder to see. A driver might miss a motorcyclist if they are not paying close enough attention. Some drivers will ignore riders completely before causing a collision.
The driver is usually at fault for a left-hand turn accident. However, the driver might say that the biker was lane-splitting, speeding, or negligent in some other way. This could reduce how much the biker can claim in compensation.
If you were injured on your bike, you’ll probably need to fight for what you deserve. Bikers often face unfair biases that make financial recovery challenging. At John Foy & Associates, we know how to help. Call us at (404) 400-4000 or contact us online for a FREE consultation.
Lane-splitting is when a motorcyclist rides between two traffic lanes. A biker might lane-split when traffic is slow or backed up.
The laws on lane-splitting vary by state. In Georgia, lane-splitting is illegal for motorcyclists, and it can lead to accidents. A biker could be found at fault for the accident if they were lane-splitting before the crash.
Inexperienced Riders or Drivers
Everyone who obtains a driver’s license should know how to drive safely. That includes both car drivers and motorcycle riders. If one or the other is inexperienced or careless, it can instantly lead to an accident.
Inexperienced drivers might not know to look out for smaller vehicles like motorcycles. As a result, the driver could collide with a biker as they try to pass or turn near the car.
Bad Road or Weather Conditions
Poor weather or road conditions increase the risk of an accident. These factors can be even worse for bikers because they have less protection. In some cases, dangerous weather or road situations can contribute to an accident.
Partial Fault in Motorcycle Accidents
In Georgia, the at-fault party in an accident is liable for the costs. Georgia also has modified comparative fault laws, which say:
- More than one party can be at fault for an accident.
- An injured person can recover damages if they are less than 50% at fault.
- Someone who is 50% or more at fault cannot recover damages.
The other driver or their insurer might try to blame you after the crash. Unfortunately, this could reduce your compensation options. You might need help from a motorcycle accident lawyer who can protect your rights.
Building a Motorcycle Accident Claim
After your accident, there are ways to protect your rights. These steps can help you build a claim and fight for compensation:
- Report the accident to the police.
- Make sure officers create an accident report.
- Take pictures of the accident scene.
- See a doctor as soon as possible.
- Save all bills and other evidence of your damages.
- Talk to a lawyer as soon as possible.
Proving fault in a motorcycle accident is challenging. However, you shouldn’t have to pay for someone else’s mistakes. An experienced lawyer can help fight for what you deserve.
Talk to a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer for Free Today
Call John Foy & Associates after your motorcycle accident. We have been helping injured bikers for over 20 years. Our team is not afraid to fight for what you deserve.
Call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online for a FREE consultation. Our lawyers don’t get paid unless we win your case, so there is no risk. We are available 24/7 to take your call.