The State of Washington, and the Yakima area in particular, has some of the most beautiful scenery in the country. Although the weather may not be conducive to riding a motorcycle year around, there are plenty of days during the year that provide perfect weather for riding. Experienced bikers know the risk involved in riding a motorcycle. Despite taking all possible precautions, the risk of being involved in a motorcycle accident is higher than being involved in an accident in a passenger vehicle. If you have been in a motorcycle accident and were injured as a result, you may be entitled to compensation for those injuries.
Motorcycles, as well as their riders, have come a long way since the image portrayed by Marlon Brando back in the 1950s. Today, motorcycles are enjoyed by people from all walks of life. Some people ride for pleasure, while others use a motorcycle as their primary form of transportation because of the cost benefits it offers. Regardless of the reason, motorcycles are everywhere. Despite the fact that motorcycles are everywhere, drivers of other vehicles still claim not to see them, often with tragic results. According to the Centers for Disease Control, or CDC, deaths as a result of crashes involving passenger vehicles reached an all-time low from 1999 to 2008. Deaths from motorcycle crashes, however, reached an all-time high during the same time period, despite efforts by both private and public organizations to bring awareness to bikes on the roadways. From 2001 to 2008, 34,000 people were killed in motorcycle accidents and another 1,222,000 were injured. The death rate associated with being in a motorcycle accident increased by 55 percent during the same seven-year period.
To make matters worse, the risk of serious injury or death is significantly higher if a biker is involved in a collision. The likelihood of receiving some type of injury if involved in a motorcycle accident is as high as 90 percent, with a 50 percent or higher chance of the injuries being serious. Injuries to the rider’s legs and feet are common when involved in a motorcycle accident and account for approximately 30 percent of all motorcycle accident injuries. Even a first-rate pair of chaps cannot completely prevent the possibility of road rash or more serious injuries to your legs, such as broken bones.
Just as a pair of chaps cannot prevent broken bones, a helmet cannot ensure that a rider will not suffer head or neck injuries. Wearing a helmet reduces the risk of serious injury to the head or neck, but 22 percent of all injuries sustained in motorcycle accidents are to the head and neck, with some being severe and life threatening.
The Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
The reasons why motorcycles are involved in collisions are as varied as the reasons why passenger vehicles are involved in collisions; however, the motorcycle is usually not at fault. As many as 75 percent of all accidents involving a motorcycle are caused by the driver of the other vehicle. The most common accident scenario involves a passenger vehicle or truck turning left into the path of the oncoming motorcycle. Not surprisingly, the most common reason given by the negligent driver is that he or she simply did not see the motorcycle. Although a biker can certainly be negligent in an accident, it happens only a small percentage of the time. Drivers of cars and trucks still don’t watch for bikers, plain and simple.
If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident in the Yakima area, the chances are good that the driver of the other vehicle was negligent, or at fault. If that was the case, then you are likely entitled to compensation for the injuries caused by the accident, including your medical bills, lost time from work, repairs to your bike and the emotional trauma caused by the accident. The motorcycle accident attorneys at The Mariano Morales Jr. Law Firm can help. Contact the team today by calling 509-457-1948 or use our online form for your free initial consultation.