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What Makes Motorcycles So Much More Dangerous Than Cars?

By Renee Nordstrand on November 20, 2023

A motorcycle on the ground in an intersection after an accident.

It’s not surprising that California has more motorcycle riders than any other state. Of course, California has the largest population, but there are additional reasons why motorcycles are popular in the Golden State. Our short rainy season makes it possible for people to use motorcycles to get around town and commute to work almost year-round.

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Biker’s Arm Is a Serious Injury

By Renee Nordstrand on May 15, 2022

person being treated for arm injury

In a motorcycle collision, it is second nature for a person to protect themselves by using their arms. Biker’s arm covers a broad range of injuries to the nerves in the upper arm that can result when a biker uses their arm to brace their fall in a crash, or when the motorcycle lands on their arm.

The nerves at risk of being damaged when a biker crashes are the median, ulnar, and radial nerves. Collectively, these nerves control the movement in arms, hands, and fingers. Biker’s arm can lead to devastating injuries such as permanent nerve damage or loss of function in the fingers and arms.

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Road Rash: Who Is at Risk?

By Renee Nordstrand on January 27, 2021

motorcyclist on Harley-Davidson

When you picture road rash, you may conjure an image of a scraped knee or skinned elbow. While those are technically mild forms of road rash, the severe forms can be much, much worse. Third-degree road rash, for example, usually results in skin, muscle, and tendon being stripped away from the body. In some cases, the bone may even be visible.

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Don’t Downplay the Danger of Road Rash

By Renee Nordstrand on August 8, 2020

motorcyclist driving down a long wooded highway

When you think of road rash, you may imagine a child falling off of their first bike and skinning their knee or a teen stumbling as they try to flip their skateboard and scratching their arm. But the truth is, road rash is a dangerous injury that many motor vehicle accident victims suffer.

While most of us have experienced a minor form of road rash at some point in our lives, the more severe road rash injuries can affect you for the rest of your life.

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Are Mopeds Just as Dangerous as Motorcycles?

By Renee Nordstrand on July 29, 2020

a row of mopeds parked on the side of the street

When riding a motorcycle or bike, we’re all warned to ride defensively, wear a helmet, and make sure drivers know we’re on the road. There is very little advice readily available for moped lovers, however. Why is that? Is it because they are less dangerous to ride than motorcycles? Well, the truth may surprise you.

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Practice Motorcycle Awareness Every Month

By Renee Nordstrand on June 15, 2018

motorcyclist sitting next to his bike under a tree

May was motorcycle awareness month, but everyone on the roads around Santa Barbara should be aware and respectful of motorcyclists all year long. Motorcyclists face certain dangers on the road that other motorists do not, and when accidents occur, they are more serious and life-threatening for people on motorcycles than for those in vehicles.

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Motorcycle Lane-Splitting Is Legal in California, But Is It Safe?

By Renee Nordstrand on March 18, 2018

biker driving motorcycle down the street

Lane-splitting may seem inherently dangerous. But there is research to support the notion that it is actually safe and can be beneficial for everyone on the road. Throughout much of the world, lane-splitting on motorcycles is a perfectly acceptable way to get through traffic. In the U.S., however, it is only legal in California, where motorcyclists are free to move among other vehicles.

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Couple Seriously Injured In Motorcycle Crash Near Montecito

By Renee Nordstrand on June 12, 2013

A 51-year-old Montecito man was arrested and charged with driving under the influence (DUI) after his SUV collided with a motorcycle head-on in the 800 block of Old Coast Highway. A 63-year-old man and his 59-year-old wife were seriously injured in the crash and were rushed to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital where they were listed in critical condition.

According to, the Canadian couple was behind another couple from Canada on their motorcycle when the tragic accident occurred. The driver of a Toyota 4Runner SUV allegedly crossed the center lane of the highway, and while the first motorcycle managed to swerve past the wrong-way vehicle, the second motorcycle was not so lucky. It was struck head-on.

Reportedly, both the victims suffered severe injuries to their left legs. Although it has not been confirmed, early reports indicated that one of them might also have suffered an amputated arm.

The driver of the SUV was taken to Santa Barbara County Jail, where he was booked and charged with felony DUI. A Santa Barbara Police Department spokesman said that it appeared that the suspect might have been driving under the influence of several different substances. Bail was set at $100,000.

The couple had shipped their Harley Davidson motorcycle down from Canada and had intended to take an extended tour of the United States.

“It’s a horrible thing,” the police spokesman said. “Just two couples out having fun, and the day ended in a horrific manner.”

If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident caused by a negligent motorist, it is important that you seek an experienced and knowledgeable attorney as soon as possible. The Santa Barbara motorcycle accident attorneys at the Law Offices of Reneé J. Nordstrand will properly investigate your accident to determine the cause of the crash. We are dedicated to seeing that our clients recover damages for any personal injuries sustained, as well as other costs associated with a crash.

If you have questions about your legal rights following an accident, call our Santa Barbara office at (805) 962-2022 or our Encino office at (818) 981-3530 for a free, no-obligation consultation from an experienced legal representative at the Law Office of Renee J. Nordstrand. We can also be easily contacted online.

Two Friends Stand Trial in Deadly Motorcycle Crash

By Renee Nordstrand on March 28, 2013

Two Santa Barbara motorcyclists have been ordered to stand trial for vehicular manslaughter and reckless driving in connection with the death of a friend who was killed on Foothill Road, while allegedly racing them on his motorcycle.

According to, the three had been accused of racing at a high rate of speed when the accident occurred. The victim crossed over a double-yellow line on a blind curve and crashed into an oncoming SUV. After striking the SUV, the motorcyclist went down a steep embankment. One of his friends skidded off the road and another continued on, until he realized the other two were not following him.

The friend came back, but fled allegedly because he was afraid that police would discover he had neither motorcycle insurance nor a motorcycle license. He initially ran from police when they came to his home. He later denied that the three had been racing. The two survivors are currently being held in Santa Barbara County Jail.

A Santa Barbara Superior Court Judge determined that the 24-year-old victim of the fatal motorcycle accident might not have crashed if he had not gone out to ride with his two friends. The judge felt there was enough evidence presented at the preliminary hearing to hold a trial.

Both men have been charged with felony vehicular manslaughter, reckless driving, and participating in a speed contest causing injury. Arraignment has been scheduled for April 4.

When seeking to prove liability in a wrongful death motorcycle accident, it is important that you seek a law firm that has a proven track record of winning judgments for its clients. Sometimes, determining the responsible party for a deadly motorcycle crash is not cut and dry, so having the experienced and knowledgeable legal representation that the Law Offices of Reneé J. Nordstrand can provide makes sense for your family.  We can be reached online or call us at our Santa Barbara office at (805) 962-2022 for a free and confidential review of your case.

Driver Sentenced in Deadly Oxnard Hit-and-Run Motorcycle Accident

By Renee Nordstrand on January 14, 2013

The Oxnard wrongful death motorcycle accident attorneys at the Law Office of Renée J. Nordstrand have learned that a judge has sentenced a man to more than 12 years in prison in connection with a 2011 hit-and-run accident on highway 101 in Oxnard that left a motorcyclist dead.

The 24-year-old Oregon man had pleaded guilty to gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated; evading an officer; resisting police; and assault with a deadly weapon.

Witnesses told police officers that the driver had been driving recklessly in his pickup truck and had been drifting in and out of lanes before he clipped a motorcycle that was heading north on Highway 101 near Del Norte Boulevard in Oxnard. The prosecutor for the case said that the victim “never had a chance when he was struck.”

A spokesman for the California Highway Patrol (CHP) said the driver was high on marijuana when he struck and killed the motorcyclist. He tried to evade officers, and even pointed a handgun at his own head and then toward a pursuing officer, before throwing it out of the pickup’s driver-side window.

After stopping his vehicle and leading officers on a pursuit across three southbound lanes of Highway 101, he was caught, but had to be stunned with a Taser before he surrendered.

Have you lost a loved one in a motorcycle accident caused by a negligent or reckless driver? The legal team at the Law Office of Renée J. Nordstrand will fight for your family’s legal rights to see that the parties responsible for your loss are held liable for their actions. Our knowledgeable and experienced Oxnard personal injury attorneys can help your family during a trying and difficult transition.

For a free consultation and review of your case, contact our Southern California Offices in Santa Barbara by dialing (805) 962-2022 or in Encino at (818) 981-3530.