Riding a motorcycle involves facing certain risks that make you more likely to get into an accident. Aside from being more difficult for car and truck drivers to spot, you can also encounter hazards like potholes and debris. Because your motorcycle is prone to wobbling at higher speeds, this can increase your risk of being in an accident on highways and interstates where the most dangerous accidents can occur. Knowing what to do if you experience a motorcycle accident injury and how to determine who is at fault helps ensure that you get the right legal assistance.
Who Is at Fault in a Motorcycle Accident?
In roughly two-thirds of accidents that involve motorcycles and other vehicles, the other driver is at fault for interfering with the motorcyclist’s right of way. In some cases, the other driver makes a left turn to cross the path of a motorcyclist coming from the other direction. If you were speeding or going through a red light on your motorcycle, however, you will be considered at fault. In general, as long as there is sufficient evidence that the other driver was responsible for the accident, they will be held liable for it.
You might be considered at least partially at fault for a motorcycle accident based on comparative negligence. This refers to factors of carelessness that might have caused the accident, such as driving at night with a broken headlamp or tail light. It is also possible for the other driver to be partially at fault for comparative negligence based on the condition of their vehicle at the time of the accident.
In Arkansas, the law requires motorcyclists under the age of 21 to wear a helmet. However, no matter your age, protective gear of some kind is legally required. If you were not wearing protective gear in a motorcycle accident, if will be difficult (but not impossible) to sue another driver if you sustain any injuries. If your injury was not related to your lack of protection, you may successfully seek compensation from the driver who caused the accident.
In other cases, the designer or manufacturer of your motorcycle might be at fault if a defective design element or piece of equipment affected your ability to operate it safely. Following an accident, you should have your motorcycle examined for any defective parts. If you sustain injuries due to any defects, you might be able to seek compensation from the designer or manufacturer.
What to Do After a Motorcycle Accident
If you were injured in a motorcycle accident, take the following steps as soon as possible:
- Write down your experience of the accident. Take note of the details you can remember, such as when it happened, how it happened, who was there and what the weather conditions were.
- Do not admit to being at fault. Until you have met with a lawyer, do not admit to being at fault, either verbally or by signing insurance claims stating this.
- Take photos. Use your phone to take photos of the accident scene and your injuries so that you can submit these as evidence.
- Find eyewitnesses. Ask anyone who was in the area to serve as an eyewitness to the accident. Their account of what happened can help determine who was at fault.
- Keep track of your injuries. Your doctor will have a record of your injuries, but you should keep one as well. Write down the types of injuries you have, the side effects and symptoms you have experienced, and the kinds of treatments you are undergoing.
- Seek legal help. Contact a personal injury lawyer in Arkansas to handle your case as soon as possible. Your lawyer will advise you on the legal steps you can take if you have a motorcycle accident injury.
If you have suffered from a motorcycle accident injury, contact the personal injury lawyers at Caddell Reynolds by calling (800) 889-6944. We can schedule a free legal consultation and provide you with the assistance you need to win your case.