Motorcycle Accidents Result in Fatalities and Serious Injuries Leaving Victims and Families Struggling
Two young men lost their lives when the motorcycles they were riding crashed into the same vehicle, in the southbound lane of U.S. 27. The vehicle and the motorcycles were traveling southbound, approximately half a mile south of Pembroke Road. One of the motorcyclists was pronounced dead at the scene, while the other died later at Hollywood Memorial Regional Hospital. None of the occupants of the vehicle were injured. It is unclear how the accident occurred, however the investigation is ongoing.
Motorcycle Helmet Laws in Florida
While being involved in any accident can be traumatic, motorcyclists involved in an accident are much more likely to suffer severe injury or death. As many as 5,000 motorcyclists across the nation lose their lives during a collision with a vehicle, with more than 100,000 more suffering serious injury. Because many states—including Florida—have dropped motorcycle helmet laws, making wearing a helmet voluntary, head injuries and brain trauma from motorcycle accidents has increased. In the state of Florida a person 21 or older is allowed to operate or ride a motorcycle without wearing a helmet, however those 20 and under must wear a helmet. Those not required to wear a motorcycle helmet must be covered by an insurance policy affording at least $10,000 in medical benefits for injuries incurred during a motorcycle accident.
Responsible Parties in a Motorcycle Accident
Motorcycle accidents can be especially complex as well as difficult to present to a jury. Many jurors still believe in the stereotypical reckless, outlaw motorcyclist, therefore may make assumptions about the accident which are simply not valid. Motorcycle accidents may be the result of a negligent driver, a defective motorcycle or motorcycle part, or a badly designed or poorly maintained roadway. In some cases, more than one factor contributed to the accident. Many Floridians are under the assumption their PIP insurance carried on a vehicle automatically transfers to their motorcycle, however this is not the case. This can leave a motorcyclist injured and uninsured during a time they desperately need insurance.
Factors Involved in Motorcycle Accidents
In a large number of motorcycle accidents, the driver of the vehicle is found to have violated the motorcyclist’s right-of-way. In other instances, the driver failed to see the motorcyclist. Many automobile drivers look for another vehicle when changing lanes, but fail to look for a motorcyclist. In other cases, the driver sees the motorcyclist, but underestimates the speed the motorcycle is traveling. Drivers may fail to leave a safe distance between their vehicle and a motorcyclist, may cut a motorcyclist off at an intersection, may swerve in front of a motorcyclist, or may back out of a driveway or parking space without looking for motorcycle riders.
Injuries Resulting from a Motorcycle Accident
Due to the lack of protection afforded a motorcyclist, an accident can leave the rider with extremely serious or life-threatening injuries. As noted, the most common injury following a motorcycle accident is head trauma and traumatic brain injury. Brain trauma can irrevocably alter the life and future of the motorcyclist as well as the lives of friends and loved ones. In some cases, those suffering from brain trauma can be unable to complete even the most basic day-to-day tasks. Other common injuries resulting from motorcycle accidents include damage to the spinal cord, limb amputation, severe road rash, burns, disfigurement, bone fractures and neck and back injuries.
An experienced Florida motorcycle attorney can find the cause of your accident, determining whether the other driver failed to exercise a reasonable standard of care or was driving while distracted or driving recklessly. Allowing a knowledgeable attorney to deal with insurance companies on your behalf can allow you to heal, both physically and emotionally. You may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering, depending on the level of your injuries and the cause of your accident. You and your family are likely suffering, emotionally and financially following your motorcycle accident. Don’t face these struggles alone—speak to a compassionate Miami motorcycle attorney today.