Who is at Fault in a Motorcycle Accident?


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Bikers get a bad rep. A quick search for statistics on motorcycle accidents will return numerous results on how riders are at fault. It's difficult to locate information that confirms what most bikers already know- that the majority of crashes are the result of another driver's error or failure to pay attention. This may be, in part, due to the common public misconception that motorcycles and their riders are generally unsafe. However, a deeper look into statistics will turn up some surprising facts. 1) Those at Risk Specific at-risk categories include:

  • Men
  • Older riders, ages 60 and up, tend to sustain the worst injuries.
  • The average age of those involved in a fatal collision is 41 in South Carolina.

2) When the Rider May Be at Fault Those who question the overall safety of bikes often quote the following statistics:

  • Motorcycle accident fatalities have had a steady rise over the last decade or so, while car accident fatalities have mostly declined or stalled.
  • 37-percent of bikers in a crash have consumed alcohol prior to the incident.
  • 30-percent of them are considered to be legally drunk, with a blood-alcohol level of 0.08 or higher.
  • 34-percent of bike fatalities involve excessive speed on the part of the rider.
  • 24-percent of cases involve a rider who does not have a current license.

These conditions are all preventable and are representative of poor individual choices, versus the overall safety of bikes. Although the numbers may seem large, they indicate only a small portion of the underlying cause. 3) When the Other Driver is at Fault It isn't widely known how often the driver of a passenger vehicle is at fault. However, a recent study puts the number at 60-percent. More often than not, a biker is powerless to stop the collision. This is because other drivers aren't paying attention or don't properly judge the bike's rate of speed. Commonly, the driver of a passenger vehicle will pull out in front of a bike or turn in front of one, which doesn't allow the rider enough time to slow or stop without risk of flipping. Although this results in the bike colliding with the other vehicle, the rider could not have prevented the crash.

Safeguarding Against Motorcycle Accidents and Fatalities

As of now, South Carolina has lax laws regarding bikes. Only riders ages 20 and under are required to wear helmets. Most people who are hospitalized and die after a collision suffer from a traumatic brain injury. One year, this number was as high as 78 percent . Regardless of the laws, it's wise to wear a helmet each and every single ride. Additionally, there's no training requirement for a learning permit, which means anyone can hold onto that permit for as long as they like in South Carolina, without ever having to prove they have the skills needed to ride safely. Proper education is essential in keeping a new rider and others on the road protected. Unfortunately, there's no cure-all that safeguards bikers from the errors of other drivers. However, there are certain things that you can do to make your journey safer. Namely, you must ensure that drivers of passenger vehicles take notice of you, your position, and your rate of speed. Lights on the bike, such as a headlight or daytime running-light should be used, and bright colors should be worn.These distinct colors or reflectors should also be on the bike to call attention to you. Position lamps will not only alert other drivers of your presence, but will also help them better gauge your position and rate of speed. Sadly, in this day and age, you can't expect other motorists to look out for you, which means you have to learn to continually anticipate what you will do in the event that another driver makes an error.

Charleston Motorcycle Accident Attorney

If you have been injured, or have lost a loved one, due to a motorcycle accident, it's important to find an attorney who understands the underlying causes for collisions. Proving who is at fault can be difficult and you should have an expert in the field on your side. Contact Clore Law today to find out how we can help you get the settlement you deserve.

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