Chicago Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Chicago Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
A motorcycle accident can be deadly, considering the rider is unprotected and likely to fall to the ground. Unfortunately, motorcycles are harder to see on the roads, and car drivers may carelessly strike one.
Experiencing a motorcycle accident can cause severe injuries and trauma and can majorly impact the quality of one’s life. You can hold the responsible party accountable for causing injuries and losses by hiring an experienced motorcycle accident attorney.
The Chicago motorcycle accident lawyers on our Injury Lawyer Team are passionate about serving victims in their personal injury cases. We are dedicated to providing the best service and getting clients maximum compensation.
Our experienced motorcycle injury lawyers have served injured motorcycle accident victims and their families. All confidential or sensitive information you share with our Chicago motorcycle accident attorneys remains private through an attorney-client relationship.
Motorcycle Accident Statistics
In 2018, there were almost 5,000 motorcycle crash fatalities in the US, according to Bankrate. The number of motorcycle deaths has kept increasing, with 5,579 fatal motorcycle crashes in 2020.
There is a much higher risk of dying from a motorcycle due to the vulnerable body of the rider being exposed. Those involved in motorcycle accidents in 2018 were 27 times more likely to die than car passengers.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 80% of motorcycle accidents result in fatalities. According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, there were 3,418 motorcycle crashes in Illinois.
Out of that number, 160 motorcyclists died, and 2,514 were injured. These statistics show that motorcyclists run a high chance of sustaining severe injuries and losses from motorcycle wrecks.
Causes of Chicago Motorcycle Accidents
Many factors can cause a motorcycle accident. Negligent driving is the cause of most motorcycle crashes and can include inattention, drunk driving, and speeding.
It is most dangerous for motorcyclists to be involved in a motorcycle accident with another vehicle. According to the National Highway Safety Administration, more than half of fatal motorcycle accidents involved other motor vehicles in transport.
Some of the common causes of these deadly accidents are listed below.
Driving Over The Speed Limit
When both motorcyclists and vehicles speed, the drivers cannot prepare for a sharp turn or another vehicle that turns into the road. There is not enough time for a driver to be attentive to any changes in road conditions when they are speeding.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2015, 33% of motorcycle drivers involved in deadly accidents were speeding at the time.
Driving Under The Influence
All drivers should never drive while under the influence of alcohol or an illegal substance. Drivers endanger themselves and others when they drink and drive.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, of the 4,684 motorcyclists killed in accidents in 2015, 27% were driving while intoxicated. This percentage shows that a motorcyclist has a high chance of dying in an accident that involves alcohol intoxication.
Even some prescription medications must be used carefully and as a doctor directs usage. Some of these drugs can make a person sleepy or uncoordinated, resulting in an accident.
Any substance impairing cognitive functioning will affect alertness and the ability to drive safely.
Inattentive Drivers On The Road
There are many instances where a driver is not paying attention to the road or their surroundings and causes an accident. Many distractions are in our vehicles and surroundings, including texting, eating, music, other passengers, and billboards.
Phones have proved to be a distraction that leads to many motorcycle and car accidents on the roads daily. Talking on the phone and looking down to text are ways our devices can cause an accident.
It is not as easy to see a motorcycle approaching compared to a bigger vehicle which can result in a fatal crash.
Distracted driving causes drivers to make unsafe lane changes and fail to yield the right of way to a motorcycle. All drivers must focus on the road to prevent anyone from getting hurt.
Serious Injuries Caused By Chicago Motorcycle Accidents
With more motorcycle accidents resulting in fatalities than ones where only vehicles are involved, many Americans understand how dangerous riding a motorcycle truly is. A motorcyclist’s body is exposed and is likely to be impacted by another vehicle, nearby property, or the ground.
According to the National Safety Council, motorcycle riders make up only 3% of registered drivers. Yet, in 2020, 14% of all traffic crashes and 4% of all occupant injuries were motorcyclists.
Some of the most common motorcycle accident injuries include:
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI): a blunt force of hitting the head against a hard object can cause swelling and bleeding in the brain. A traumatic brain injury can lead to long-term cognitive problems or even death.
- Fractured skulls: When motorcyclists fall from their bikes during a motorcycle crash, their unprotected heads hit the ground first, resulting in a fractured skull, leading to severe brain damage.
- Concussions: when the head is suddenly and violently jolted, the brain can bounce around inside the skull, leading to a concussion. This injury can cause long-term problems with memory, focus, and coordination.
- Lacerations: if a motorcyclist falls off their bike and lands on a sharp object, they may sustain lacerations to their head. These cuts can be deep and may require stitches or surgery.
- Bleeding: another common injury sustained in motorcycle accidents is bleeding that could result from lacerations or simply from being hit in the head. If left untreated, bleeding can lead to serious health complications.
- Road rash: When motorcyclists fall off their bike during a motorcycle crash, they can skid across the pavement, scraping their skin and flesh. This painful injury can lead to infection and long-term scarring.
- Broken bones: like fractures, broken bones can lead to intense pain and potential disability. Surgery may be necessary in some motorcycle accident cases to repair the damage.
- Internal organ damage: Motorcycles are not as stable as cars, so the driver and passenger can be thrown from the bike when a collision occurs, and can cause serious internal injuries, such as damage to the liver or spleen.
- Spinal cord injuries can also occur in motorcycle accidents. A spinal cord injury occurs when there is damage to the spinal cord., leading to paralysis, loss of sensation, and bladder and bowel control problems.
- Neck injuries: The lack of protection on a motorcycle makes riders vulnerable to neck injuries in the event of a collision. These motorcycle accident injuries can be extremely debilitating and may require surgery or long-term rehabilitation.
- Chest injuries: When a rider is thrown from a motorcycle, their chest often makes contact with the ground or another object, which can cause significant bruising and even broken ribs or a collapsed lung.
- Eye injuries: Road debris and wind can cause significant eye damage in motorcycle accidents ranging from minor scratches to blindness in one or both eyes.
- Burns: If a motorcyclist comes into contact with fire during an accident, they may sustain severe burns over their body. These burns can require extensive medical treatment and may leave lasting scars.
- Amputations: In some cases, severe injuries sustained in motorcycle accidents can lead to amputation of one or more body parts, often resulting from being struck by another object or coming into contact with fire.
- Wrongful death: A fatal motorcycle accident occurs even when the rider wears a helmet.
Motorcycle Laws In Illinois
In Illinois, all traffic laws and signals apply to motorcyclists in the same way that they apply to vehicle drivers. Other laws apply to motorcyclists and may prohibit them from performing certain activities.
Some of the Illinois motorcycle laws include:
- Motorcyclists are prohibited from driving between two other vehicles that are in adjacent lanes
- Motorcyclists are prohibited from passing a vehicle on the right unless there is cleared pavement at least 8 feet wide
- People are prohibited from operating a motorcycle on one wheel
- No state laws require motorcycle riders to wear a helmet
Motorcyclists need to take precautions and wear equipment in case they find themselves in an accident. Safety equipment will not prevent a collision but may lessen the motorcycle injuries.
Illinois is one of the few states with no motorcycle helmet laws, but they are significant for the rider’s personal safety. Wearing a helmet during a collision can prevent a fatal injury to the head.
There is also equipment that can protect the eyes from dirt, rain, insects, and other debris. Goggles or a face mask can be used to protect your face from these dangers.
Certain types of clothing, such as jackets, can also protect motorcyclists from the wind, debris, and rain. Reflective or bright-colored clothing can also protect you because you will be more visible to the other drivers.
Using bright clothing and equipment can protect you and avoid distractions.
When Motorcycle to Share the Road With Cars, Trucks, Bicycles, and Pedestrians
When sharing the road with motorcycles, it is essential to remember that they are entitled to the same rights and responsibilities as any other vehicle, including following all traffic laws and respecting the right-of-way of motorcyclists.
One of the biggest dangers for motorcyclists is being struck by a car turning left. Drivers often do not see motorcyclists and turn directly into their path, resulting in severe injury or death. When making a left turn, drivers should always use caution and look for motorcycles in their blind spots.
Rules Drivers Must Follow When Sharing the Road With Motorcycles
- Always use your turn signals when changing lanes or turning, even if you think there is no one around. Motorcycles are small and can be missed, especially in the same lane as a car.
- Checking your mirrors before changing lanes is essential, but it’s especially crucial when motorcycles are around. They can quickly disappear into a blind spot.
- Don’t tailgate motorcycles – they need more room to stop than cars do.
- Allow more following distance when behind a motorcycle – they need more time to stop than cars do.
- Be aware that motorcycles may be in the same lane as you, even if it doesn’t seem like it. Give them plenty of space to avoid a collision.
- If you’re turning at an intersection and see a motorcycle coming, wait until they’ve passed before completing your turn. They won’t be able to stop as quickly as a car can, so you don’t want them slamming on their brakes while in the middle of the intersection.
- Remember that motorcycles can drive in either direction, just like bicycles can. If you’re approaching an intersection and see a motorcycle coming from another direction, be prepared to stop for them.
- When passing a motorcycle, give them plenty of room and always pass on the left side of the bike. Never pass bikers on the right side – if you do, you’ll be in their blind spot, and they might not see you coming.
- Check your mirrors regularly, especially before making any turns. You never know when there might be a motorcycle coming up behind you that you didn’t see in your initial scan of the mirrors.
- Car and truck drivers must always use their turn signals when pulling over to the side of the road – even if you’re only going to be stopped for a second. Again, motorcycles can disappear from view, so it’s important to let them know your intentions.
- If you’re driving in bad weather and can’t see very well, slow down and use extra caution when driving near motorcycles – they might not be as visible as cars are due to rain or foggy conditions.
- Be especially careful when turning left at intersections – many accidents involving motorcycles occur when drivers turn left without checking their mirrors or looking for bikes from the other direction.
Just because a motorcycle is driving slower than traffic flow doesn’t mean it’s safe to pass them – they could start moving faster without warning. Always remember that motorcycles are people too – they have families who love and miss them just like everyone else.
If you are a driver, give motorcyclists plenty of room when passing them. Never try to share the same lane with a motorcycle, as this can be very dangerous. Always use turn signals when changing lanes or making turns so that motorcyclists know your intentions.
What Motorcycle Accident Victims Should Do If You Involved in An Accident
A motorcycle accident can lead to life-devastating injuries or even death. The first thing you should do if you are involved in a motorcycle accident is to call law enforcement, then:
- Seek medical attention as soon as possible. Even if you don’t think you are seriously injured, it is vital to get checked out by a medical professional. Sometimes the pain will appear days later and indicate that you have suffered an injury due to the accident.
- At the motorcycle/car accident scene, document the other’s party’s driver’s license information, insurance, and license plate number.
- Do not sign any insurance documents without speaking to a lawyer first. Insurance companies will often try to get accident victims to sign away their rights to full and fair compensation. It is why seeking legal help immediately after a motorcycle accident is so important.
- Gather evidence from the scene of the Chicago motorcycle accident. Take photos of your motorcycle’s damage and any injuries you have sustained. You should also get the contact information of any witnesses to the accident.
- Contact an experienced Chicago motorcycle accident lawyer from our law offices for a free consultation. Our experienced personal injury lawyers will be able to review your motorcycle accident case and help you get the maximum compensation you deserve through a personal injury claim.
Why You Should Hire A Chicago Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
A motorcycle accident can take lives or result in life-debilitating injuries. The victim’s family will endure significant losses and suffering due to the incident Chicago motorcycle accident.
Experienced motorcycle accident lawyers will be able to protect your legal rights and help you navigate all motorcycle injury claims. Your personal injury attorney will help you and your family seek compensation while focusing on recovery.
Your Chicago motorcycle accident attorneys will understand the legal process, evidence, and documentation needed to establish liability for your motorcycle accident case. You are also more likely to get a higher settlement amount with the help of a lawyer than if you were to work directly with the insurance company.
Some forms of compensation that accident lawyers in Chicago can help you obtain include:
- Lost wages
- Medical bills
- Future medical expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
What Should I Do If My Loved One Passed Away In A Motorcycle Accident?
Motorcyclists are more likely to die in a collision than those in other types of vehicles. You may be able to file a wrongful death claim if your family member has died as a result of another driver’s negligence.
In Illinois, the personal representative, or executor, can file the claim. This person is usually assigned in the deceased person’s will.
In motorcycle accident cases where no person is assigned to this duty in a will, the court will appoint a personal representative. Damages that are awarded will go to the family of the deceased person.
The family members may be able to recover compensation for loss of financial support, funeral costs, and loss of companionship. You should consider speaking with a Chicago motorcycle accident attorney who is experienced in handling wrongful death claims as soon as possible because the statute of limitations is two years.
Your experienced motorcycle accident lawyer can help you file the wrongful death claim and carry out duties related to the estate.
Consult With A Chicago Motorcycle Accident Attorney
A motorcycle accident is one of the most frightening experiences anyone can experience. The aftermath can be challenging for any family suffering from the consequences.
Seeking representation can give your family peace of mind that the legal process will be handled efficiently. Holding the responsible party liable by hiring a Chicago motorcycle accident attorney can help you and your family get the compensation you deserve.
We accept all motorcycle accident claim cases and wrongful death claims through a contingency fee agreement. This promise ensures you will not pay our legal fees until our motorcycle accident attorneys resolve your personal injury claim through a negotiated settlement or jury award.
The Cook County personal injury attorneys at the Injury Lawyer Team have the experience and compassion to help motorcycle accident victims resolve their personal injury lawsuits. All confidential or sensitive information you share with our Chicago motorcycle accident attorneys remains private through an attorney-client relationship.