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What Causes Motorcycle Accidents in New Orleans?

Blue motorcycle on the ground after being hit by a car.

Motorcyclists lack the protective barriers found in passenger vehicles, leaving riders vulnerable to severe injuries or death in motorcycle accidents. Without steel walls or airbags, the consequences of a motorcycle accident can be catastrophic. Indeed, a single careless maneuver by a vehicle driver can result in a motorcycle accident that alters a biker's life forever.

Motorcycle accidents can result in severe injuries

Motorcycle accidents often lead to serious injuries due to the limited protection for riders. Here are some of the most common injuries sustained in motorcycle accidents:

  • Head injuries: Even with a helmet, motorcyclists can suffer from concussions, traumatic brain injuries, and other head trauma. Helmets significantly reduce the risk of fatal head injuries, but they do not eliminate the risk entirely.
  • Spinal injuries: Trauma to the spine can result in partial or complete paralysis or other permanent disabilities. Spinal cord injuries can have life-altering consequences, affecting mobility and overall quality of life.
  • Broken bones: Motorcyclists frequently experience fractures, particularly in the limbs, pelvis, or ribs. These injuries occur from the impact of the crash or from being thrown from the bike.
  • Road rash and abrasions: Sliding across the pavement can cause severe skin abrasions, known as road rash. These injuries can range from minor scrapes to deep wounds that may require skin grafts and extensive medical treatment.
  • Internal injuries: The force of a motorcycle accident can lead to organ damage, internal bleeding, or punctured lungs. These injuries are not always immediately visible but can be life-threatening and require urgent medical attention.

The 5 most common causes of motorcycle accidents

Motorcycle crashes can happen for various reasons, but they're often attributed to negligence by other drivers. The disparity in size and visibility between motorcycles and larger vehicles heightens the likelihood of accidents, as smaller vehicles may go unnoticed. However, five specific reckless driving behaviors by vehicle drivers contribute significantly to motorcycle accidents.

1. Left turn motorcycle accidents

One common cause of motorcycle accidents is vehicles making left turns. These accidents typically occur at intersections, corners, or stop signs. They occur when a motorist turns left in front of an oncoming motorcyclist or hits a passing motorcycle.

2. Poor observation from drivers

Poor observation by drivers is a significant factor contributing to motorcycle accidents. Drivers may fail to notice motorcyclists due to distractions such as texting, talking on the phone, or adjusting the radio. Motorcycles are smaller and less noticeable than other vehicles, making them more prone to being overlooked by inattentive drivers.

3. Negligent lane changes

Negligent lane changes also pose a significant risk to motorcyclists. When drivers change lanes without properly checking their mirrors or blind spots, they may inadvertently collide with a motorcyclist traveling in the adjacent lane. This type of collision can knock motorcyclists off their bikes or cause them to exit the roadway.

4. Hazardous road conditions

Motorcycle accidents don't always result from collisions with other vehicles; they can also occur due to hazardous road conditions. Factors such as construction zone debris, potholes, and inadequate road maintenance can all contribute to these incidents. When municipalities are aware of such dangers but fail to address them, they may bear responsibility for the consequences. If a motorcyclist sustains injuries or experiences other losses due to a hazardous road condition, the municipality could be held liable.

5. Reckless driving

Reckless behaviors such as aggressive driving, road rage, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, tailgating, and speeding pose serious dangers to motorcyclists. Even with protective gear, the injuries inflicted by another driver's reckless actions can be debilitating and possibly lead to permanent disability or death.

We fight for injured motorcyclists in New Orleans

If you've been injured in a motorcycle accident due to another driver's negligence in New Orleans, get help from The Law Offices of John S. Williams. We can gather the facts that matter to your case, negotiate with the at-fault party's insurance company, and help you pursue the maximum compensation you deserve for your medical bills (past, present, future), lost wages, and pain and suffering. Let our law firm be the one you call when you need help the most. Reach out today for a free consultation so we can listen to what happened, learn more about your injuries, and explain how a motorcycle accident lawyer can help.

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