Last month, Erie police investigated a motorcycle accident that injured the man and woman who were riding the motorcycle. It appears that the rider swerved to avoid colliding with a car that had failed to yield the right of way. In another news story, Pennsylvania State Police cited a Corry man with failing to yield the right of way in a motorcycle accident that killed a motorcyclist in May of this year. The driver turned left in front of the motorcycle causing a traffic crash. The motorcyclist died at the accident scene.
Other Drivers Cutting Off Motorcycles
During 2013, 4,668 motorcyclists lost their lives and 88,000 motorcyclists were injured in traffic accidents. Motorcyclists are about 26 times more likely to be killed in a traffic accident compared to the occupants of a passenger car. The main reason for the increased risk of death for motorcyclists in a traffic accident is the lack of protection a motorcycle offers the rider compared to the protection a passenger vehicle offers to the occupants. A motorcyclist receives the full impact of a collision with another vehicle because there is nothing between the rider and the outside of the other vehicle.
One of the most common causes of motorcycle crashes is another driver’s error. The drivers of other vehicles fail to yield the right of way to the motorcycle. As in the crash above, the driver turned left in front of the motorcyclist. For whatever reason, drivers of other vehicles do not pay enough attention to the road to see motorcyclists. Texting while driving, eating, drinking, reading, adjusting controls, and grooming are common driver distractions that may lead to a failure to yield the right of way.
Regardless of the reason, this cause is a common reason why many motorcyclists are injured or lose their lives in motorcycle crashes. According to the data, 42 percent of the crashes in 2013 involved a vehicle turning left in front of a motorcycle. In all of the crashes that year that involved two vehicles, 74 percent of the crashes were frontal collisions. It is apparent that turning left in front of motorcycles is a huge problem on the road.
How Can You Protect Yourself?
Motorcycle awareness is a priority for many states, including Pennsylvania. Groups and government offices have initiated campaigns to raise awareness of motorcycles on the road. You may see signs dotting the sides of roads and in your neighbors’ yards. Some of these signs say:
- Watch For Motorcycles
- Look Twice For Motorcycles
- Think Bike Look Twice
- Look Twice Save A Life
- Share The Road
- Start Seeing Motorcycles
- Motorcycles Are Everywhere
Unfortunately, signs do not work for all drivers. Motorcyclists must take precautions to avoid accidents. The best precaution a motorcyclist can take while riding is to remain alert. Watch for other drivers because it is a fact that some of those drivers will not be watching for you. Avoid distractions and allow extra room between you and other vehicles to give yourself additional time to take evasive action to avoid a collision.
Have You Been Injured In A Motorcycle Crash?
Unfortunately, you cannot control every situation. If you are injured in a motorcycle crash, our Erie motorcycle accident attorneys can help you recover compensation from the driver who caused the accident.
Contact The Travis Law Firm toll free at (800) 401-2066 to schedule a free consultation with one of our Erie, PA motorcycle accident lawyers.