There are Many Things that Motorcyclists Can do to Prevent Accidents in Georgia
On any day that dawns clear and dry, there are numerous bikers sharing the asphalt with cars and trucks. Many motorcyclists are willing to endure any temperature to enjoy the freedom of the road, exploring back roads and roaring down major highways. Unfortunately, every day, accidents between motorcycles and motor vehicles lead to serious injury and death for the drivers of both the motorcycles and the cars. However, due to the nature of the bike structures, motorcyclists face the greater risk of harm.
There are many reasons for car-bike collisions and the resultant injuries. Motorcycles are more difficult to see for other vehicles because of their smaller size, so many accidents occur because of lane changes and merges where the biker was not observed. Aggressive driving can cause a biker to swerve and lose control of the motorcycle. Road debris may pose more of an obstacle for a biker who cannot go over the obstacles. In addition, a motorcycle does not offer the protection for a driver that a car or truck does, including a strong enclosed frame and safety features like airbags and seatbelts. This results in greater severity of injuries for bikers when a crash does happen. However, there are many simple steps that motorcyclists can take to avoid these tragic results.
Approximately seventy-five percent (75%) of motorcycle crashes occur between a motor cycle and another type of vehicle. The remaining twenty-five percent (25%) are individual bike accidents.
Here are some basic steps to take to reduce risk of injury while enjoying your bike:
- Wear a helmet. Despite the popularity of the “let those who ride decide” campaign linking the freedom of the bike to the freedom to choose not to wear a motorcycle helmet, helmets can save your life and the life of your passenger. In crashes, a helmet will reduce the risk of traumatic head and brain injuries by thirty-five percent (35%) in drivers and forty percent (40%) in passengers.
- Maintain the motorcycle. A vehicle that is not properly maintained may lead to catastrophic brake failure leading to an accident. Even a breakdown increases risk of injury as there is no safe place for a motorcyclist to wait who has a disabled vehicle on the side of a busy roadway.
- Wear appropriate clothing. Many of the injuries suffered by motorcyclists include road rash, the painful result of sustained high speed contact between the cyclist’s body and abrasive asphalt. Wearing driving leather or heavy denim will minimize the harm done by skidding across the surface of the road. In addition, donning reflective gear, despite the ribbing that this may garner from fellow riders, will increase visibility and minimize unintentional contact between a biker and a car or truck.
- Educate yourself. Whether a new enthusiast or an old pro, taking motorcycle safety courses will provide important knowledge about road safety and operating considerations. Many courses also will discuss the use of hand signals in addition to signals on the bike itself. These signals increase visibility and may grab the attention of a driver who has missed the biker’s presence up to that point.
One factor that is important and should be obvious is do not drink and drive. Statistics show that thirty percent (30%) of bikers involved in fatal accidents had a blood-alcohol content (BAC) of .08 or higher. In all fifty states, .08 is the legal limit for driving while impaired. Enjoy the road, but do not put your life and the lives of others at risk by consuming alcohol and getting on a bike.
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The Atlanta motorcycle accident attorneys at Montlick and Associates are available to provide effective legal representation to victims of motorcycle accidents throughout all of Georgia and the Southeast. No matter where you are located our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you.
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