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TX injury lawyerOn the night of October 14, a driver turning onto Larkdale Drive from O’Connor Road was struck by a motorcyclist traveling at a “high rate of speed,” killing the motorcyclist and damaging the automobile. The driver had no injuries, but the motorcyclist was pronounced dead at the scene. Sadly, this is all too common in San Antonio motorcycle accidents, with motorcyclists being killed much more often than automobile drivers, and those that survive are much more likely to be severely injured than auto drivers. There are multiple reasons for this.

Statistics Show Heightened Danger

Motorcyclists simply have to do more with less, given the comparative lack of protection surrounding them compared to the protection an automobile gives its driver and passengers. Data from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety estimates that motorcyclists are up to 29 times more likely to die in a wreck than those in an automobile. This is compounded by Texas’ helmet law, which only requires such protection for those 20 and younger, meaning that many older cyclists are not wearing helmets when they are involved in a wreck if they choose not to. While this is their choice, it does contribute to a high fatality rate, as helmets have been shown to prevent approximately 37 percent of fatal injuries.

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TX injury lawyerDuring the last weekend of September, a hit-and-run accident on Ronald W. Reagan Boulevard in Leander left one motorcyclist dead, and the driver missing. According to law enforcement, the truck turned into the path of the motorcyclist, who was headed southbound, and the cycle hit the rear part of the truck, which caused the rider to be thrown. The truck did not stop to assist the injured man, instead choosing to drive on. There are multiple things that might breed a cause of action in this story, especially for the family of the deceased motorcyclist, as they seek compensation that could somehow even partially mitigate the loss of their loved one.

Failure to Stop and Render Aid Is a Crime

Motorcyclists are in some danger while on the roads, even if they operate their vehicle perfectly, simply because they lack the protection and the weight that automobiles have, and this, unfortunately, translates to injury and fatality statistics - on average, around 500 motorcyclists per year are killed in auto accidents on Texas roads, according to data from the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT). While this obviously does not excuse reckless or negligent driving or other actions, it is worth remarking on how an action that can be lethal against a motorcyclist might cause an automobile’s driver mere irritation. If an accident occurs, it is the responsibility of both vehicles involved to stop and render aid to anyone hurt.

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TX injury lawyerA young man was killed on July 3 when he took a curve too fast on his motorcycle and hit a light pole on Dessau Road, just inside the Pflugerville city limits. The motorcyclist was unable to stop in time and was thrown when his bike hit a curb. This is sadly common in Texas, where motorcycle accidents occur with regularity for a multitude of reasons. However, depending on the situation, it may be possible to hold someone liable in a motorcycle accident, even if it only officially involves a single vehicle.

“Single Vehicle” Accidents Are Often Not

Statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) show that riding a motorcycle is an inherently dangerous activity - per mile driven, motorcyclists have a death rate 26 times higher than that of automobiles. In 2016, the most recent available data year, the NHTSA showed 4,853 motorcyclists killed, 2,190 in single-vehicle accidents (approximately 45 percent). However, in this metric, single-vehicle accidents are defined as crashes in which only one vehicle sustains damage. This does not cover the accidents in which another vehicle may have played a role, but managed to get away - for example, a car swerving in front of a motorcyclist or not seeing a motorcyclist in their lane until too late might conceivably have caused the accident, but it would still be classified as a single-vehicle accident for tabulation purposes.

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Texas injury lawyerOn the night of May 22, one motorcyclist was killed and one injured as a pickup truck struck them both on the shoulder of Old Corpus Christi Road. The cyclists had pulled over to try and fix a problem with one of the bikes, but apparently, the driver of the pickup truck was not able to see them. One motorcyclist died at the scene, a 35-year old man, and a younger man was airlifted to San Antonio Military Medical Hospital with “life-threatening” injuries. While this accident is obviously a tragedy, it is somewhat unusual in that most motorcycle-related accidents occur when both vehicles are in motion. Texas roads can be more dangerous for motorcycle riders than any other vehicle operators.

Multiple Causes Of Motorcycle Accidents

While accidents simply happen sometimes, there are common causes which may precipitate accidents more often than might otherwise occur. A significant portion of motorcycle accidents, especially in Texas, with its high-speed limits, can be put down at least partially to visibility issues. The wreck on Old Corpus Christi Road can partially be ascribed to visibility problems, but more normally, visibility will be an issue in terms of seeing a motorcycle in a car or truck’s “blind spot,” or simply missing it because of its slim frame and light weight. Some motorcyclists will also lane split (share a lane with an automobile), despite its questionable legality in Texas, which can make them hard to see.

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Texas injury lawyerThe night of April 16 proved fatal for a San Antonio motorcyclist who was thrown from his bike after attempting to avoid crashing into a car on NW Loop 410. The car had been speeding and clipped the motorcyclist, who was then thrown from his vehicle after trying to avoid a further crash. He died of his injuries at University Hospital. This type of incident is sadly not uncommon, though it is somewhat unique that the cyclist’s injuries were attributed more to the impact with the road than to the collision itself. Motorcyclists are at high risk for injury and death in any type of crash.

Many Reasons for Higher Fatality Rate

Motorcyclists are consistently shown to be disproportionately injured and/or killed in automobile accidents. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that per vehicle miles traveled, motorcyclists were killed almost 29 times more often than automobile passengers in road accidents. Helmets and safety equipment do help in lowering the risk, but they are only estimated to be approximately 37 percent effective based on existing data. Very often, the facts are simply against the motorcyclist who gets involved in a crash.

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The sooner you call, the sooner we can build your case, secure evidence and get maximum compensation for your injuries.

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