On my main web site, you can find the Motorcycle Accidents page which explains the legal aspects of a motorcycle accident. However, I recently came across a report on motorcycle accidents that I would like to share. It is called the Hurt Report and a full copy is available for ordering. Since it is a 1981 report, many people would discount it as not being up-to-date or relevant. However, to me, it appears just as accurate and pertinent today as it was almost 30 years ago.
Since we cover the law on our web site, this is simply an instructional piece which illustrates HOW motorcycle accidents happen. Once we know HOW they happen, we can glean WHY they happen. Then, once we know HOW and WHY they happen, our readers can hopefully use this information to become safer bikers and drivers.
Some points of interest:
-About 1/4 of all motorcycle accidents are single vehicle accidents;
-1/3 of all single vehicle motorcycle accidents were due to something other than rider error such as roadway defects (i.e., potholes), vehicle failure, and animal involvement;
-When the motorcycle accident involved another vehicle, the driver of the other vehicle violated the motorcycle rider’s right of way and was at fault 2/3 of the time;
-The number one cause of motorcycle accidents is the failure of other drivers to see the motorcycle on the road, with the most common infraction being a car making a left-hand turn and cutting off the motorcyclist who is traveling straight in the left-hand lane;
-Motorcycle riders between the ages of 16 and 24 are over-represented in accidents, while riders between the ages of 30 and 50 are under-represented;
-Almost half of fatal motorcycle accidents involve alcohol consumption;
-The likelihood of injury from a motorcycle accident is very high–over 96%;
-Groin injuries were very common;
-The use of a helmet is the single most critical factor in reducing serious head injuries to motorcycle riders.
Considering that there were over 1,500 motorcycle riders killed in Georgia accidents last year, the above information should prove informative and helpful. It is our sincere hope that all Georgia motorcycle riders can ride safely.
While every accident has its own set of facts and nuances, it is important that the injured party retain counsel as soon as possible. Once retained, a thorough investigation will be conducted to determine the road conditions, factors that caused or contributed to the wreck, potential responsible parties, potential layers of insurance that may apply to the claim, eye witnesses, contact information for police who arrived at the scene, EMT personnel involved, witnesses, medical professionals who may have rendered care and treatment to the injured, towing companies involved, etc. Pictures of the property damage to the vehicles should also be timely taken to document the severity of the damage.