Motorcycles are not just transportation. For many people, they are a form of
entertainment. However, reckless motorcycle riding can lead to serious and even fatal
accidents. The very thing that makes motorcycles exciting: the exposure of the
motorcyclist, is the very thing that makes it dangerous. In this section, we hope to bring
you information that will help you enjoy your motorcycle more safely. If you have been
in an accident, here you will also find some basic information on causes and statistics
regarding motorcycle accidents. A Houston motorcycle accident attorney at Kirkendall Dwyer can help as soon as possible, when you contact us to discuss your case.
Motorcycle Accident Causes
The most common type of motorcycle accident is that in which a car strikes a motorcycle
head-on. Over half of motorcycle accidents occur in this manner. Distracted driving
often factors into head-on collisions. If a driver’s attention is not fully on the road, he
might easily miss an approaching motorcycle. Because the motorcyclist does not have
the body of the car to protect him, the injuries that result are very severe, and often fatal.
Cars Turning Left
Cars making left turns are particularly dangerous to motorcyclists. If a motorcycle is
trying to speed through an intersection while a car coming from the opposite direction is
making a left turn, a collision in which the front of the car impacts the side of the
motorcyclist can easily occur. Depending on the proportion of fault, recovery can be
affected. Often the driver of the car will be held responsible, but if the motorcyclist
contributed to the circumstances of the accident, recovery may be reduced or even barred
Single Vehicle Accident
Motorcycles can also be involved in single vehicle accidents. Such accidents occur when
a motorcyclist collides with a stationary object. This may be the result of driving under
the influence, such as when a motorcyclist is drunk and crashes into a parked car or a
wall. It can also occur as a result of weather or road conditions that cause the driver to
lose control and crash. As with other types of motorcycle accidents, the fact that there is
no part of the vehicle protecting the motorcyclist means that these accidents can be
We’ve all been on the highway when a motorcycle passes between cars and lanes. Some car drivers find this behavior disconcerting, as high speeds combined with close proximity create situations ripe for collisions. This practice, called lane splitting, is not specifically legal in Texas. However, if an accident does occur while lane splitting, a motorcyclist will be found contributorily negligent. Depending on what the other cars involved in the accident were doing, the motorcyclist might be barred from recovery.
Yes to Helmets, No to Alcohol
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that if motorcyclists wore
helmets, 37 out of every100 motorcycle fatalities would be avoided. That is an almost
40% reduction in death by one simple action. Unfortunately, Texas law does not require
motorcycle riders over the age of 21 to wear a helmet if they have insurance. But
financial concerns are far from the only concerns motorcyclists should have. By the
nature of the vehicle, your very life is at stake.
Head and neck injuries are most common in motorcycle accidents. As we’ve pointed out
before, without any portion of the vehicle to protect the body of the rider, the head and
neck are exposed and more susceptible to permanent injury. A helmet is one of the only
ways to provide yourself with real protection. If you were wearing a helmet and still
suffered head and neck injuries, this will help support your claim and be looked upon as
evidence that the other parties involved in the accident were negligent. If however you
were in an accident and failed to wear a helmet, then you might be barred altogether from
recovery, depending on how negligent you are found to have been.
Insurance companies will make things much more difficult on you if you were not
wearing a helmet. Your burden of proof will be higher and you might not recover
While we encourage you to wear a helmet every time you get on the road, even if it is just
to go around the corner, we encourage you just as strongly not to drink and ride. Most
accidents involving one motorcycle alone involve alcohol. Alcohol affects all of your
senses, makes you engage in risky behavior, and increases reaction times. Not only is it
against the law, but it endangers your well-being, and the well-being of others on the
road. Don’t drink and ride!
Our Attorneys Can Provide the Help that You Need
From the first phone call, our attorneys will show you the individual attention that your
case needs and deserves. Motorcycle accidents can be serious, both in terms of property
damage and personal injury. And if you contributed in any way to your accident, such as
by failing to wear a helmet or by drinking and riding, you need a skilled attorney to
present the strongest case possible on your behalf. Our dedicated team will investigate
every possible avenue of recovery to make sure that your compensation is complete.
Contact an experienced Houston motorcycle accident atttorney at Kirkendall Dwyer LLP,
for a free consultation about your accident today.