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.
After an accident, it is a good idea to speak to an experienced Santa Barbara motorcycle accident attorney, who can help you deal with insurance companies, determine who was at fault for the crash, and make sure your rights are protected.
Risks on the Road for Motorcyclists
Whether you’re on a motorcycle or driving in another vehicle, you should be aware of risks that bikers face that other motorists do not.
The relatively light size and high speeds of motorcycles can make controlling them difficult. Experience is very important, and new motorcyclists carry considerably more risk of getting into accidents.
NordstrandBlack PC represented a client who was stopped at a red light on his motorcycle. The driver of the car behind him negligently allowed her stopped vehicle to move forward, crushing the motorcycle and causing our client serious injuries. The motorcyclist was helpless due to the relative size of his vehicle. Fortunately, NordstrandBlack PC was able to assist him in receiving good medical care and negotiated an excellent settlement for him.
Motorists might not always look for motorcycles when they are checking for vehicles in adjacent lanes, so bikers must drive defensively on the road. California is the only state in the U.S. where lane-splitting is legal, but with so many tourists from other states, motorcyclists must watch out for drivers who might not expect lane-splitting. NordstrandBlack PC fights for our motorcycle clients who perform lane-splitting maneuvers and are injured due to another person’s negligence. We educate insurance companies and jurors who do not understand the law.
When an accident does occur, motorcyclists are much more likely to be seriously injured since they do not have the protection of a steel frame around them. Serious scrapes, broken bones, and internal injuries are all common in motorcycle accidents. Loss of limbs and decapitation can also occur. Road rash is a particular danger for bikers, which is why heavy clothing such as leather should always be worn to protect a motorcyclist’s skin in the event of an accident.
What an Attorney Can Do for You
After a serious motorcycle collision, having an experienced attorney can make a tremendous difference to your recovery. Insurance companies, even a person’s own insurance company, rely on paying as little money as possible to make a profit for their shareholders, and will typically make small offers rather than pay what is really owed to an injured victim. If a civil lawsuit against the at-fault driver is appropriate, a knowledgeable motorcycle accident lawyer is vital to ensure your case is handled correctly and that you receive the maximum compensation available to you.
If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident in Southern California, call NordstrandBlack PC at (805) 962-2022 for a free and confidential consultation.