As an avid motorcyclist for over 40 years and as an experienced Pennsylvania Philadelphia motorcycle accident attorney, I carefully analyze date concerning motorcycle accident investigations. Many experienced motorcyclists understand and know that no matter how safe and proper one adheres to the rules of the roadway and motorcycle safety, many other drivers are simply not paying attention and fail to yield the right of way.
Statistics indicate that the number of motorcycle accidents occurring throughout the United States and Pennsylvania continues to rise. In 2012, motorcycle fatalities throughout the United States increased by approximately 10%. From 1977 to 2011, the number of motorcycle accidents deaths per year doubled despite the fact that total traffic fatalities dropped in the same period.
Dramatic Increase in Motorcycle Accidents in 2012
Although statistics are not yet available for 2013, it’s evident there was a big increase for the 2012 year.
In just the last week in Pennsylvania, news sources in Philadelphia and the surrounding suburbs reported multiple motorcycle crashes resulting from other drivers not paying attention or failing to yield the right of way.
Unfortunately, the error of another driver is one of the leading causes of crashes involving motorcyclist, bicyclists, and pedestrians. Although motorcyclists and bicyclists have the same rights as drivers of any other type of vehicle on the road, car, truck, and other vehicle drivers often fail to understand the same and violate their right of way.
In almost every motorcycle crash that we have investigated in the last six months, a motorcyclist was injured or killed by another driver not paying attention and failing to acknowledge the motorcyclist’s right of way. In some cases, the driver of the striking vehicle admitted that they were not paying attention and was in fact adjusting a GPS or claimed they could not see the motorcycle operator due to their size or lack of bright colored clothing with reflective material.
In many cases despite taking proper steps to prevent accidents such as wearing brightly colored clothing with reflective material and utilizing headlights with bright beams during the daytime, unfortunately, motorcycle accidents still occur.
To add insult to injury, we have repeatedly seen police reports erroneously pointing the finger at the motorcyclist when determining fault on a police report. Obviously, it is important to independently investigate each motorcycle accident and gather as much information as possible from the outset to overcome what we perceive is a bias against motorcyclists.
Motorcycle accidents often result in catastrophic life-changing injuries and unfortunate fatalities. Many times spinal cord trauma, brain injury, permanent disfigurement, amputations, and the inability to work are the result. Many times even though the striking motorist failed to yield the right of way and is clearly the cause of the accident, police reports do not always accurately reflect the same calling for further investigation by a skilled and experienced motorcycle accident investigator and attorney.
Severely Hurt In A Pennsylvania Motorcycle Accident?
Victims of such motorcycle accidents may have claims for general negligence. Chapter 33 of the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Code sets forth general rules of the road in Subchapter B defining “right of way”. If the motorcyclist is injured or killed due to the fact that another vehicle failed to yield the right of way while approaching or entering an intersection, turning left, or violated a stop or yield sign, a cause of action may exist against the offending vehicle. Contact our Philadelphia Personal Injury Attorneys to look into your case – call today for a free consultation: (215) 246-9000.