With little to protect them in collisions involving passenger vehicles or trucks, motorcycle riders are among the most vulnerable motorists on public roadways. As such, it becomes important that both riders and drivers of motor vehicles to do their part in making safety a priority. After all, negligence, inattention, and traffic violations can lead to devastating outcomes when a motorcycle rider is involved.
The Law Offices of Jason E. Taylor is led by Founding Partner Jason E. Taylor, a lifetime motorcycle enthusiast who is passionate about protecting the rights of riders injured in preventable motorcycle accidents. In addition to helping riders and their families navigate the legal process toward the financial compensation they deserve, he is also actively involved in the motorcycle community and in efforts that make roadways safer for all riders.
If our North and South Carolina motorcycle accident attorneys can help you further, contact us at our offices in Hickory, Charlotte, and Columbia. You can schedule an appointment at (800) 351-3008.Tips for Riders
When it comes to riding a motorcycle, riders know that it often becomes their responsibility to look out for their own safety. This is because they are routinely overlooked by drivers of passenger vehicles. If you or someone you love is a rider, there are few basic things you should be doing any time you are on your bike:
- Vigilance – Being vigilant is one of the most important things a rider can do. This means making the operation of their motorcycle their only task and priority. In order to be able to be on the lookout for potential risks, including signs of drivers making turns or changing lanes, riders need to be free from any potential distractions, including cell phone use and listening to music. They also need to ensure that they drive defensively and only make moves after fully scanning their surroundings and being aware of where other motor vehicles are, and could potentially be.
- Visibility – Being visible is critical to rider safety, as it can help reduce risks of accidents in which drivers of motor vehicles fail to see riders. To increase visibility, riders can keep their headlights on and wear bright or reflective clothing, especially at night. Avoiding blind spots is also important when making sure other drivers are able to see a nearby motorcyclist. Additionally, riders should make eye contact with drivers to ensure that they are seen prior to making turns, entering intersections, or engaging in acts that place them in front of or nearby vehicles.
- Obey traffic laws – Motorcyclists are considered motor vehicles by law, which means they have all the same rights and responsibilities as drivers. Obeying traffic laws is part of this. Not only does this ensure you safely share the road with others, it can also protect you against preventable accidents, as speeding, unsafe lane changes, and other violations can prove dangerous when vehicles are nearby.
- Wear a helmet – Statistics have shown that wearing a DOT-approved safety helmet can save lives and reduce risks of serious injuries, including brain injuries. In fact, researchers from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) have found that helmets decreased the risk of death by nearly 40%, and the risk of head injuries by nearly 70%.
- Ride sober – Crash data reports that drug and alcohol impairment plays a role in many preventable motorcycle wrecks. Just as any rider would expect motorists to drive sober, they too should obey the law and never ride under the influence. Riding impaired is a negligent act that puts riders and others around them at risk of suffering harm.
Drivers of motor vehicles also have a responsibility to operate their vehicles safely, especially when around motorcycle riders. Here are a few ways motorists can safely share the road:
- Avoid distractions – A large percentage of motorcycle wrecks involve drivers who never saw riders. While inattention alone can cause a motorist to miss a nearby rider prior to making a move, distraction plays a significant role in limiting their ability to see what’s around them. When behind the wheel, drivers should make the task of driving their only task. This means avoiding distractions such as cell phone use, texting, eating or drinking, adjusting music, reading, or talking to passengers – all of which can take a motorist’s manual, mental, and visual attention off the road.
- Look for riders – Drivers without distractions can still miss nearby riders when they fail to scan their surroundings, especially prior to changing lanes, making turns, or entering intersections. Before you make any move behind the wheel, make sure the coast is clear by checking all mirrors, turning your head to check blind spots, and signaling your intent. Check twice for riders.
- Share the road – Motorcyclists are motor vehicles with the same right to the road. As a motorist, you should share the road with riders by providing them with enough following distance and space when passing, and the same rights as you would give any motorist.
Even when motorcyclists do all they can to make safety their top priority, they can still fall victim to preventable wrecks caused by the negligence of others. When they do, our civil justice system provides injured riders with the right to pursue legal action that will hold motorists accountable for their negligence and liable for the serious injuries and damages they cause.
Our legal team at The Law Offices of Jason E. Taylor helps injured victims and families protect their rights following preventable wrecks caused by negligence. By leveraging our decades of experience in personal injury law, we effectively advocate for clients in even the most difficult cases, and fight for the compensation they rightfully deserve.Discuss Your Case During a FREE Consultation
If you wish to discuss a potential case involving a motorcycle accident anywhere in North Caroline or South Carolina, our firm is readily available to help. We can explain your rights, whether you have a valid case, and what we can do to fight on your behalf. Contact us 24/7 for a FREE consultation.