What Are the Most Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents?

Group of friends riding motorcycles.

Motorcyclists are more likely to be hurt or even killed in traffic accidents than other road users because motorcycles don’t have the same protections as a car.  Some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents are:

  • Speeding
  • Distracted driving
  • Intoxicated driving
  • Unsafe left turns
  • Merging without looking
  • Inexperience
  • Dangerous road design
  • Inclement weather

What Are the Most Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents?

Motorcycle Accident Statistics in Georgia

The Governor’s Office of Highway Safety (GOHS) reports that motorcyclists are consistently overrepresented in traffic fatalities in Georgia. Although motorcycles only represent about 2 percent of registered vehicles in the state, motorcyclists accounted for 11 percent of total traffic fatalities and 21 percent of total driver fatalities in one recent year. Motorcycle fatalities also increased by 22 percent over a recent three-year period. The Atlanta region accounted for 42 percent of motorcycle crashes in the state in one recent year.

What Are Some Injuries That Result from Motorcycle Crashes?

Motorcycle crashes can result in a wide range of injuries because of motorcyclists’ exposure to the elements and lack of protection. Some of the most common injuries include:

  • Road rash occurs when the rider’s skin makes contact with the pavement, resulting in abrasions or lacerations. These injuries range from mild to severe and can require skin grafts to repair.
  • Fractures and broken bones are common in riders’ hands, arms, legs, and feet. These injuries may require casts or surgery to treat.
  • Spinal cord injuries result when motorcyclists are thrown from their vehicles. Blunt force trauma damages the nerves in the spinal cord. These injuries can lead to paralysis or other mobility issues.
  • Traumatic brain injuries happen when the head suffers a forceful blow, particularly if the rider is not wearing a helmet. These injuries can range from mild concussions to more severe brain damage.
  • Internal organ damage can occur if the rider’s body is subjected to extreme force during the crash. This can result in internal bleeding or damage to vital organs such as the liver or kidneys.

Are There Steps I Can Take to Protect Myself While Riding?

While no amount of preparation can eliminate the odds of an accident or serious injury, there are certain steps you can take to reduce the risk:

  • Safety equipment – Always wear proper safety gear like a helmet, protective clothing, gloves, and boots. A high-quality helmet can reduce the risk of head injuries, while protective clothing can help prevent road rash and other abrasion injuries.
  • Pay attention – Stay alert and focused while riding. Avoid distractions and always watch for other vehicles and potential hazards such as potholes or debris.
  • Use extreme caution – Follow traffic laws and ride defensively. Obey speed limits, use turn signals, and leave plenty of space between yourself and other vehicles on the road. Remember that motorcycles are smaller and less visible than cars, so avoid lingering in blind spots and never assume that other motorists can see you.
  • Be educated – Take a motorcycle safety course to learn proper riding techniques and strategies for staying safe on the road. Doing so can give you the tools to anticipate other motorists and react to danger.

What Should I Do If I Am Injured in a Motorcycle Accident in Georgia?

If you are injured in a motorcycle accident in Georgia, you must take certain steps to protect your health and your rights to recovery:

  • See a doctor – Seek medical attention immediately. Even if you do not feel injured, it is important to get checked out by a medical professional to rule out any underlying injuries or conditions. Your health and safety should always be your top priority.
  • Document the scene – Gather evidence from the scene of the accident if you can do so safely. Take photos of any damage to your motorcycle and the other vehicles involved in the accident. Get the contact information of any witnesses who saw the accident.
  • Complete treatment – Follow your doctor’s orders and attend any necessary medical appointments or therapy sessions. Keep track of all medical bills and other expenses related to your injuries, as these may be eligible for compensation.
  • Talk to a lawyer – Contact a personal injury lawyer who understands the complexities of motorcycle accidents. They can advise you on your rights, investigate the accident to determine who is to blame, and negotiate with the at-fault party or their insurance provider for a fair settlement.

How to Prove Who Is At Fault in a Georgia Motorcycle Accident?

In Georgia, the parties at fault for a motorcycle accident are responsible for compensating the people they hurt. Proving who is at fault requires strong evidence, like the following:

  • Police report– The police officer who responds to the crash will investigate the scene, take statements from witnesses, and create a report that includes their findings.
  • Eyewitness testimony– Witnesses who saw the accident can provide valuable testimony about who did what and when.
  • Physical evidence– Physical evidence such as skid marks, vehicle damage, and debris from the accident scene can also provide clues about how the accident occurred.
  • Expert analysis– Experts in accident reconstruction, vehicle and road design, and related fields can analyze the incident to develop a likely chain of events.

What Types of Damages Are Recoverable in a Motorcycle Collision Accident?

If you are involved in a motorcycle collision accident, you may be able to recover compensation in the form of damages for the following:

  • Medical expenses– This includes the cost of any medical treatment related to your injuries, including hospital stays, doctor visits, medications, and physical therapy.
  • Lost wages– If your injuries keep you from working, you deserve compensation for lost wages and any future lost earning potential.
  • Property damage– This includes the cost of repairing or replacing your motorcycle and any other property damaged in the accident.
  • Pain and suffering– This common legal term refers to the physical and emotional distress caused by the accident and your injuries.
  • Loss of enjoyment of life– You deserve compensation if you can no longer participate in your favorite activities or spend time with your loved ones as you once did.

Contact a Georgia Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

If you’re reading this page, it’s likely because you or someone you love was hurt in a motorcycle accident. If so, Butler Kahn would like to offer you our sympathy and hope that the information you’ve found on this page has been helpful. We’d also like to talk to you about the accident and how we can help you pursue the compensation you deserve from the person to blame. Contact us online or by phone for a free, no-obligation consultation with a Georgia motorcycle accident lawyer.

Picture of Matt Kahn
Matt Kahn is an Atlanta personal injury lawyer and a partner at the law firm Butler Kahn. Matt has dedicated his career to fighting for individuals and families who had been harmed by the negligence of others. At Butler Kahn, he has had the honor of helping families who have lost children in motor vehicle accidents and people who were critically injured. He helped a family secure a $45 million settlement to provide lifetime care for their son, who was critically injured in a motorcycle accident. Matt is a graduate of Emory University School of Law and has been recognized as a Super Lawyers’ Rising Star and by Best Lawyers as One to Watch. He has received an Avvo 10.0 Top Attorney rating. Connect with me on LinkedIn
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