Motorcycle accidents differ from car accidents in several ways, including frequency, the severity of the injuries, and the number of fatalities resulting from the crash. You can file for a claim if you have sustained injuries in a motorcycle accident for which you were not responsible.
Filing a lawsuit against the at-fault party will help you recover fair compensation to treat your injuries. Are you still wondering how motorcycle accidents are different than car accidents? In this post, we will help you understand the key differences and discuss what you can do if you were involved in a motorcycle crash.
Are You Likely to Sustain Severe Injuries in a Motorcycle Accident?
Yes. The potential of sustaining serious injuries in a motorcycle accident is higher than in a car crash. Car manufacturers have invested resources to enhance the safety of cars over the years. For example, new car models have accident prevention systems to protect the users. This is in addition to other safety elements, such as seat belts and airbags, which come standard in all vehicles nowadays.
Motorcycles also include safety features, like anti-lock braking systems. However, their effectiveness in minimizing the severity of injuries is incomparable to those of a car. In addition, cars have a hard exterior shell that offers extra protection in accidents. This shell, alongside the seatbelts and airbags, helps prevent passengers from flying from the car and landing on hard surfaces during an accident.
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Why are Motorcycle Accidents More Frequent on Roads?
Motorcycle accidents occur more often than car accidents because of their size. Their smaller size makes it harder for other motorists to notice them on the road. Additionally, some drivers do not accord motorcyclists the respect they deserve on the road. These drivers treat motorcyclists as second-class road users whose rights can be overlooked.
A motorcyclist must find the right balance while riding to avoid accidents on the road. Finding this balance can be difficult, especially when you are driving on poor roads or under harsh weather conditions.
Are Fatalities More Common in Motorcycle Accidents?
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), people are 29 times more likely to die in a motorcycle accident than in a car accident. This fatality rate has a close relation to the lack of safety features on a bike.
Consider a situation where a motorcyclist engages in a head-on collision with a car. The impact from the accident will most likely throw the motorcyclist onto the road or its surroundings with tremendous force. An accident of this magnitude will often result in severe injuries. The car’s safety features, on the other hand, will help protect the occupant from being thrown from the vehicle on impact.
What Should You Do After a Motorcycle Accident?
It is a good idea to seek immediate treatment for any injuries sustained after a motorcycle accident. You will also want to report the accident to the authorities. Many states have laws that outline when you should report an accident, typically based on severity of injuries or damages. You can contact your insurance company and inform them of the accident to start the claims process.
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What if You Lost a Loved One in the Motorcycle Accident?
Losing a loved one in a motorcycle crash is a tragic and painful experience. You can help mollify the pain by filing a wrongful death lawsuit for the accident. The court can compel the at-fault party to compensate you for the loss of your loved one.
If your loved one started a personal injury case but later passed away from their injuries, a lawyer can help you take action and see what damages you may be able to collect on your loved one’s behalf.
Which Damages Can I Recover After a Motorcycle Accident?
The court awards both compensatory damages and punitive damages in motorcycle accident cases. The former covers monetary and non-monetary losses that you incur because of the accident. Compensation can include:
- Medical expenses
- Lost income and future earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Property replacement or repair expenses
Punitive damages aim at punishing the at-fault party for reckless behavior and will not benefit you directly, but punitive damages are not common. Courts will award compensation depending on the facts of the case.
The Statute of Limitations
When pursuing a lawsuit, note that state laws can limit how long you have to act. For example, in the state of Indiana, you must file a lawsuit within two years of a motorcycle accident in order to recover damages. Failure to adhere to the condition will render your case null and void. This is according to IC § 34-11-2-4.
Your state may have different time limits for injury and wrongful death, so reach out to our firm to discuss your options.
Contact Isaacs & Isaacs Personal Injury Lawyers to Learn More
Have you been wondering how motorcycle accidents are different than car accidents? Our team at Isaacs and Isaacs Personal Injury Lawyers can help you better understand the differences. If you have sustained injuries in a motorcycle accident, let us help you recover damages. We do not charge upfront fees or costs unless we settle your case. Call us today for a free consultation.