May has been designated Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month by safety advocates. Motorcycle riders face the risk of being seriously injured in motorcycle accidents with other vehicles. In many cases, these collisions occur because drivers of passenger cars and trucks do not take the proper measures to drive safely around motorcycles. Drivers who act negligently may be held liable for injuries suffered by a motorcyclist in a collision, and injured cyclists can work with a skilled personal injury lawyer to ensure that they are properly compensated for their damages.
What Drivers Need to Know About Motorcycle Safety
Only 3% of all registered vehicles in the United States are motorcycles, and motorcycles only account for 0.6% of the total miles traveled by vehicles. Despite this, motorcyclists make up 14% of people killed in traffic accidents. Because people on motorcycles are at a much higher risk of being injured, drivers should always take care to notice motorcycles and drive safely around them. Safety advocates have noted that drivers should:
- Always check blind spots – Almost 40% of the area around an average vehicle consists of blind spots. Because motorcycles are so small, it can be easy for drivers to not notice that a motorcyclist is in one of their blind spots. Drivers should make sure to look in these blind spots before changing lanes or making turns, and if they fail to do so, they may collide with motorcycles or run them off the road.
- Give motorcycles a full lane – Motorcycles are much narrower than other vehicles, and it may seem like there is enough room within a lane for both a vehicle and a motorcycle to travel safely. However, drivers should always allow motorcycles to use the full width of a lane. Without the proper space, a cyclist may collide with a vehicle if they need to swerve around a pothole or obstacle in the road.
- Maintain the proper distance – Because of their smaller size, it can be difficult for drivers to judge the speed of motorcycles. Drivers should allow for extra distance when following motorcycles, ensuring that they will not strike a motorcycle from the rear if a cyclist slows down suddenly.
- Proceed with caution at intersections – Many motorcycle accidents take place at intersections, and when making turns, drivers should double-check to make sure the road is clear. By proceeding slowly and making sure they can see around any obstacles that obstruct their view, drivers can avoid the possibility of colliding with a motorcycle in the intersection.
- Avoid distractions – Drivers should always be fully aware of what is happening around their vehicle, and distractions that cause them to take their eyes or attention away from the road can cause them to fail to notice motorcycles. To prevent motorcycle accidents, drivers should refrain from texting or making phone calls while driving or any other activities that cause them to be distracted.
Contact Our Green Bay, WI Motorcycle Accident Attorneys
At Herrling Clark Law Firm, Ltd., we help people who have been injured in motorcycle accidents pursue compensation from negligent drivers or anyone else who was responsible. Following a motorcycle crash, we can gather evidence to demonstrate liability, including videos from security cameras, police reports, recordings of 911 calls, and testimony from witnesses. We will fight to make sure victims are fully compensated for their damages. Contact our Appleton motorcycle accident lawyers at 920-739-7366 to set up a complimentary consultation.