At Silverman, McDonald & Friedman, we help victims of motorcycle accidents obtain the compensation they need to pay for their medical expenses and day to day losses. We have seen very different kinds of accidents scenarios, but this was a new one.
On October 14th, an 88-year-old, Delaware man was killed when the farm tractor he was driving was hit by a motorcycle, According to police, the man was pulling the tractor out of a driveway when the motorcycle struck it. The motorcycle had been traveling southbound and for some unknown reason, it veered into the northbound lane and collided with the tractor. The 33-year-old motorcycle driver was ejected from the bike and pronounced dead at the scene. When the motorcycle crashed into the tractor, the bike’s fuel tank erupted on impact setting the tractor and its driver on fire, who died of his injures the following day according to 6ABC.com.
Although in this case the drivers of both vehicles perished, according to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), motorcycle riders are about 35 times more likely to be killed in an accident than an occupant in a passenger car. Motorcycles have no protective barrier between them and the road as do drivers of other motor vehicles. Because they are so nimble on the road and so small, the drivers of other vehicles also have trouble seeing a motorcycle often until it is too late. Despite the risks that appear to be stacked against them, motorcycle riders have the same legal rights and responsibilities as other drivers, and they are entitled to the same legal remedies if they should become injured in an accident that was caused by the negligence of another party.
Determining fault in a motorcycle accident
Driver error, whether on the part of the driver of the car or truck or the motorcycle rider, is the leading cause of motor vehicle accidents. Driver error essentially amounts to some form of negligence. A negligent driver has breached his or her duty of care to the other drivers with whom they share the road. Every driver has an obligation to operate their vehicle safely and to conduct themselves in a way that does not endanger the lives of the other drivers on the road. Motorcycle riders owe the same duty of care to operate their bikes in a manner that is consistent with the law and common courtesy. The driver who is at fault in the accident is the driver whose negligent actions caused the collision to take place. Some of the common causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- Distracted driving
- Drunk driving
- Road rage
- Driver inexperience (inability to handle the bike)
Causes of motorcycle accidents unrelated to driver error include:
- Animals in the roadway
- Poor weather conditions
- Debris in the roadway
- Limited visibility
- Defective roadway
Safety strategies for motorcycle riders
Motorcycle riders that want to avoid accidents and operate their bikes as safely as possible can do the following:
- Get the appropriate training and practice for the type of motorcycle you will be riding
- Increase visibility by keeping headlights on and wearing reflective gear
- Always wear a helmet, eye protection, gloves, jacket, leg guards and protective footwear
- Never drive drunk, drugged or drowsy
- Follow the rules of the road
Whether you have suffered broken bones, strained muscles or torn ligaments, a head injury or spinal cord injury, you may want to discuss your case with a knowledgeable Delaware motorcycle injury attorney who can inform you of your legal options for getting compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages and future medical care.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, you will want to work with a law firm whose attorneys have represented victims and their families throughout Delaware who have suffered similar injuries. At Silverman, McDonald & Friedman, we share your goals. When you have suffered a serious personal injury through no fault of your own, we want to hear your story. You may call 302-888-2900 or fill out our contact form to make a free appointment at our offices in Wilmington, Newark or Seaford. We are here to protect your rights and your future.
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Attorney Jeffrey S. Friedman joined Silverman, McDonald & Friedman in 2001. He graduated from Widener University School of Law, and is admitted to practice law in Delaware and Pennsylvania, and in several Federal Circuit courts. He areas of concentration include auto accident and workers’ compensation cases. Read more about Attorney Friedman here.