Government statistics show that motorcyclists in California and around the country are far more likely to be killed or seriously injured in accidents than passenger vehicle occupants. While some of these crashes involve motorcyclists who ride recklessly or take to the roads after drinking or using drugs, many more are caused by negligent automobile drivers who turn, change lanes or open their doors without looking.
Deadly left turns
One of the most common causes of rider fatalities is drivers who make left turns directly in front of motorcycles. Motorists do this either because they do not see motorcyclists or misjudge their speeds. This kind of accident is often deadly because riders, who have no time to react, crash at high speeds, and are ejected from their motorcycles. Motorcyclists can reduce their chances of being killed or badly injured by riding with particular care near intersections or side roads, but even that may not be enough to avoid a crash.
Lane changes and opening doors
Motorcycles are much smaller than cars, pickup trucks and SUVs, which means they often fall victim to drivers who change lanes without first checking their blind spots. These motor vehicle accidents also tend to occur at high speeds and cause death or serious injuries. Riders can also be ejected and injured when drivers or passengers open car doors without first checking for approaching motorcycles.
Motorcycle accident lawsuits
Experienced personal injury attorneys may seek to hold reckless drivers responsible for their negligent behavior by filing lawsuits on behalf of the motorcyclists they injure. When litigating these cases, attorneys could seek compensatory damages to cover their client’s doctor and hospital bills, ongoing medical treatment, pain and suffering, lost income, and property damage. When motorcyclists are killed in accidents caused by negligence, attorneys could pursue wrongful death lawsuits on behalf of their dependent family members.