If you read the Missouri news, in any form, you’ve probably seen your fair share of motorcycle accidents. You may be thinking, “My dad was right! He always told me to never own a motorcycle because I’d seriously hurt myself.”
So what is it that makes motorcycles so unsafe?
The single most common motorcycle accident that motorcyclists face comes from left-hand turns. In fact, left-hand turn accidents account for an estimated 42% of all accidents with a motorcycle and car involved.
Some common situations in which left-turn accidents occur include:
- As the motorcycle is going straight through an intersection
- As the motorcycle is passing a vehicle
- As the motorcycle is splitting lanes
While left-handed turns are dangerous when only involving two cars, the lack of protection that comes with a motorcycle typically causes these types of accidents to cause much more severe injuries. It’s also important to note that in left-hand turn accidents, the vehicle turning left is, in most cases, the at-fault party. If the motorcyclist is breaking obvious traffic laws, such as reckless driving or driving under the influence, however, they will be at fault.
How to Avoid
As most motorcycle enthusiasts know, the most important thing to keep in mind while riding is the actions of others on the road. It is important to be able to anticipate the things that other drivers are going to do on the road. Knowing how to read other drivers on the road and anticipate their actions will ensure you are best prepared to make adjustments to prevent an accident from happening.
How to Avoid
As fellow motorcyclists ourselves, we have found that the most helpful piece of information to prevent getting into head-on collisions comes from The National Safety Council’s “Four R’s.” They are as follows:
- Read the road ahead – Scan the road from all angles around you to ensure you are aware of any angle potential hazards can come from.
- Drive to the Right – Positioning yourself toward the right side of the center of your lane will allow for you to be more visible to other drivers, while also allowing you to make an exit to the shoulder in the event of an emergency.
- Reduce your speed – If you suspect something is wrong ahead, be sure to slow down to get a better view of the scenario.
- Ride off the road – If you see another vehicle, or hazard in the road, your impulse is typically to slam on the brakes.
Motorcycle enthusiasts have different reasons why they choose to own and operate their motorcycles. Some enjoy a cruise through the rolling hills, others like to take a trip to the beach or out to lunch with friends, and some want to take to the streets to get their adrenaline rushing. Whatever your reason for getting on the iron horse is, it’s important to obey the speed limit for whatever zone you are in. With increased speeds, comes increased impact speeds, meaning more devastating injuries.
How to Avoid
The easiest answer to avoiding accidents due to excessive speed is to simply obey the speed limit. As many people already know, motorcycles can still be a great time while following the speed limit. If getting your adrenaline going is the reason for riding a motorcycle, challenge yourself with things like:
- Canyon riding – The winding roads and increase in elevation will help you that thrill you’re chasing while allowing you to obey the speed limit.
- Going to a race track – If going fast is the sole reason you purchased your motorcycle, you can look for race tracks online or in your area. These locations offer a safe course for you to bring your bike and test its limits, without the worry of getting seriously injured.
Cantor Injury Law
Cantor Injury Law is a motorcycle accident law firm that has decades of experience helping our clients receive the maximum compensation for their case. While these cases may seem manageable by yourself, it’s important to not assume anything. There are many factors that go into deciding an injury case, and it’s important to have a team of qualified Missouri personal injury attorneys on your side the whole way through.