Many people in Philadelphia choose to ride motorcycles rather than drive cars. Drawn by the wind in their face and the road under their heels, motorcyclists enjoy the freedom of not feeling trapped inside a car, which they often see as nothing more than a metal cage. Unfortunately, the openness of riding a motorcycle comes with significant risks, too. Without the protection of that metal cage around them, bikers are left vulnerable if they get in a collision with a car or truck. This often leaves them seriously injured.
The personal injury attorneys at the Philadelphia law office of Gilman & Bedigian fight to help bikers get back on their feet after a motorcycle accident. By fighting for your rights and interests in court, we get you the compensation that you need and deserve to make a full recovery.
Motorcycle Accidents in Philadelphia
Motorcycle accidents are a serious problem on the roads. Because of their vulnerability in a crash, motorcyclists are much more likely to get severely hurt in the event of a crash with another vehicle. Additionally, because the roads of the United States were built with cars in mind, motorcyclists often find themselves fighting for the respect they deserve on the roads.
As a result, according to numbers by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 4,976 people died in motorcycle crashes in the United States in 2015. This number was actually up 8.3% from the year before, when bikers were found to be 27 times more likely than occupants of passenger cars to die in a crash, per mile traveled. 2015 also saw some 88,000 motorcyclists hurt in crashes, making bikers five times more likely to sustain an injury than passenger vehicle occupants, per mile traveled.
These trends are similar in Philadelphia and throughout Pennsylvania, as well. Figures from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation found that there were 3,368 motorcycle accidents in the state in 2014, resulting in 186 motorcyclists losing their lives. This means that motorcyclists accounted for 1.7% of the vehicles involved in accidents in Pennsylvania, yet managed to account for 18% of the road fatalities.
Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
Studies have found that most motorcycle accidents involving a collision with another vehicle are caused by the driver of the other vehicle. Because of their close proximity to the road, motorcyclists tend to be more in tune with their environment. As a result, distracted driving is far less common for bikers than it is for people driving cars or trucks.
Unfortunately, this does not mean that motorcyclists are always able to avoid a collision with another vehicle driven by a negligent driver. Every biker has a story of being nearly hit by a car or truck that did not give them enough room or seemed not to notice their bike on the road.
Motorcycle Accident Injuries
Because they have so little protection from other vehicles on the road, motorcyclists often suffer significant injuries whenever they are involved in an accident. Even if there are no other vehicles involved in the crash, bikers can get seriously hurt because there is so little between them and the road.
Broken bones, bruises, neck, back, and head injuries are common for motorcyclists to get in the event of a crash. The only thing that can minimize these injuries in a motorcycle accident is wearing a helmet. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), using a helmet decreases the chance of being in a fatal accident by 37%, and reduces the risk of a head injury in a motorcycle crash by 69%. Pennsylvania law also requires all bikers younger than 21 to wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle, as well as any biker over 21 who either does not have two years of riding experience or who has not completed a motorcycle training course.
Other serious injuries that motorcyclists suffer in many crashes are severe abrasions and road rash. Even wearing protective clothing like a leather jacket does not completely prevent these painful injuries, which can become infected if not cleaned and treated properly.
Philadelphia Motorcycle Accident Attorneys
Despite the dangers of riding a motorcycle, the intense draw of the open road pulls many people out of their cars and onto a motorcycle. Because bikers have a right to the road and should be able to choose what vehicle they use, the attorneys at the Philadelphia law office of Gilman & Bedigian work to represent victims of motorcycle accidents both in and out of court, fighting to get them the compensation they deserve after a serious accident. If you or someone you love has been hurt or killed in a motorcycle accident, contact our law office online or at (800) 529-6162.