There is always the unfortunate risk of an accident when riding a motorcycle. When these accidents happen, the consequences can often be significant and costly. However, many motorcycle accidents are not the fault of the rider but of some other party, who is then legally responsible for compensating the rider for the costs their injury created. Many riders can find the restitution they seek by working with a Colorado motorcycle accident attorney.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycle accidents, like most accidents on the road, can happen for a wide variety of reasons. In many cases, the causes are the same as those that lead to a car accident, but there are some unique aspects of riding a motorcycle that cause additional risks. When motorcyclists are involved in accidents, they often suffer more severe injuries and are more likely to be killed than those in cars. Some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- Driver negligence. The majority of accidents involve fault on the part of one or more of the drivers involved. Often, this takes the form of reckless driving, distracted driving, or some other traffic violation, leading directly to an accident. In other cases, there may be indirect causes, as an erratic driver may leave an accident in their wake as others try to avoid them.
Motorcycle accidents are often caused by drivers of cars or trucks, and riders may be able to file a claim against these at-fault drivers to seek compensation for the injuries, property damage, and pain and suffering. To win a compensation award in court, negligence will need to be proven.
- Visibility issues. One of the challenges that motorcycle riders must deal with is the fact that they are not always easy for other vehicles to see. A motorcycle takes up much less space on the road and might not appear as readily in drivers’ mirrors. This can be especially dangerous when drivers are attempting to change lanes. It can also become a greater risk at dusk and night when visibility is naturally reduced.
- Weather. Any kind of precipitation can be dangerous for a motorcycle. While cars and other vehicles have the benefit of at least four tires on the road, along with parallel arrangements, giving them more grip, motorcyclists have just two tires.
Therefore, when the two wheels of a car slip on precipitation, the other two wheels may keep the vehicle in place. Motorcycles have no such stabilizing mechanism, meaning any chance of slipping is more dangerous for riders.
- Road maintenance. Like precipitation, motorcycles are also especially susceptible to road maintenance issues. If their two tires hit a hazard, they lack the stabilizing tires of a car. Hazards on the road can lead to problems for riders, as could issues with traffic lights and poor signage.
- Parts failure. Sometimes, a part of a motor vehicle fails, making the vehicle difficult or impossible to control. This could happen because of a malfunction, a defective part, or even a part being improperly installed.
Staying Safe on a Motorcycle
The ideal way to avoid a motorcycle accident in Colorado is for riders to practice safety themselves. There are a few measures that can help you stay safe on the road, including:
- Follow traffic laws
- Avoid inclement weather
- Stay out of blind spots
- Consider a helmet
The most impactful, safe habit you can develop is to stay aware of your surroundings. Colorado has spectacular views, but it’s important to make sure your attention is still focused on the road and the cars around you. You can always make use of a scenic overlook or another stop if you’d like to take in the scenery, send a text, or eat.
Q: Are Helmets Required on Motorcycles in Colorado?
A: Helmets are only required in Colorado for motorcycle riders who are under the age of 18. Those ages 18 and over are not required to wear a helmet, although the Colorado Department of Transportation does recommend they be worn as a proven life-saving measure.
Q: Is It Safe to Ride a Motorcycle in Colorado?
A: Colorado is no more or less safe to ride a motorcycle than anywhere else. The primary factor in whether or not a place is safe to ride depends on the rider. There are some situations in which there may be nothing a rider can do to prevent an accident, but in many circumstances, a driver who exercises caution and pays careful attention to their surroundings can do much to protect themselves.
Q: How Long Do I Have to File a Motorcycle Accident Claim in Colorado?
A: Like all accidents involving cars and motor vehicles, the statute of limitations for filing a motorcycle accident claim in Colorado is three years. However, certain factors can influence the timeline, so it’s important to talk with a Colorado motorcycle accident lawyer soon after your accident to be sure that you understand the correct deadline.
Q: Who Might Be Liable in a Motorcycle Accident?
A: Liability in a motorcycle accident will depend on what caused the accident and who could have prevented what occurred. In many cases, this means that a driver will be liable or at least partially liable. However, governments, drivers’ employers, parts manufacturers, and other third parties could all potentially play a role.
Seek Restitution for Your Motorcycle Accident
Motorcycle accidents can often lead to significant costs for those injured. The exposure of a motorcycle can mean more serious injuries than an equivalent accident inside a car, and those injuries can often result in substantial medical bills and serious psychological impacts as well. However, these costs are the legal responsibility of whatever party caused the injuries.
A Colorado motorcycle accident attorney from the Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal could be helpful in seeing that you receive the compensation you’re owed. We have extensive experience working with the insurance companies that usually pay these claims and can prevent them from taking advantage of you by underpaying a claim. Contact us today to discuss how we can help with your motorcycle accident claim.