Why Do We Have So Many Fatal Motorcycle Crashes Here?

Two motorcyclists were unfortunately killed in two crashes in Tarrant County just last weekend. Already more than 20 people have died while riding their bikes here this year.

That’s way too many, as readers of this blog have seen my rants on this topic for years.

The two most recent collisions

A Granbury motorcyclist was killed Saturday morning on Texas 114 near the SH-121 and I-635 split in Grapevine when he collided with a disabled vehicle that was at a stop in traffic. A man named Charles Ives, who was 61, tragically died in the emergency room at Baylor Regional Medical Center at Grapevine. Two other people riding a motorcycle behind him also crashed and had to be rushed to the emergency room. Their condition is unknown at this time.

In the second accident, a Burleson motorcyclist named James Sloan, 50, died early Sunday morning when he lost control and crashed into a concrete culvert in south Tarrant County on FM 1187.

In 2013, 495 motorcycle drivers and their passengers were killed in Texas — up about 65 people just from the year before.

Why are more people dying on their bikes?

For starters, more people are riding motorcycles. The number of bikes sold has more than doubled in Texas since 2000. And there are plenty of additional cars and trucks on our highways who often don’t see or don’t want to see the bikes in time.

Many of the fatalities are attributed to the elimination of mandatory helmet laws. In Texas, only motorcyclists under the age of 21 are required to wear a helmet. That’s a stupid law. I firmly believe that all cyclists should be required to wear them.

Finally, tens of thousands of motorcycles, helmets, and components have been recalled for flaws that can increase the risk of crash.

Liability in Motorcycle Accidents

Motorcycles have the same right to use the road as cars. They follow the same laws, occupy the same lanes, and have every right to be on the road. Despite this fact, sometimes drivers do not take motorcyclists seriously, and do not give them the respect that they deserve while they are on the road. These drivers often drive in a negligent or careless manner and put motorcyclists at even greater risk.

Negligent driving by other motorists can and often does cause motorcycle accidents. Due to no fault of the rider, motorcycle accidents can be difficult to avoid. This does not defeat an otherwise valid claim; the focus is on the other driver and whether their negligence caused you to get into an accident.

When an accident occurs due to the negligent driving of another, the motorcycle accident victim has the right to recover monetary damages from the other driver to cover amounts potentially including medical bills, future medical expenses, and pain and suffering caused by the accident.

Often, determining which driver is responsible for causing a motorcycle accident is difficult. A good attorney will hire accident reconstruction experts who will immediately go to the scene, take photographs and measurements, examine the motorcycle and possibly the other vehicles involved, and do an reenactment of the crash. This photo was taken last year during such a reenactment. The filing of a lawsuit and a trial is often necessary.5_cropped.jpg

Have You Been Injured in a Motorcycle Accident?

If you have recently been involved in a motorcycle collision, it is important to contact an experienced injury lawyer right away. Do not accept a settlement offer from an insurance company without speaking to a good attorney first.

We deeply care about motorcycle safety at Bill Berenson Injury Law. Our personal injury law firm has been exclusively handling auto negligence cases, including countless motorcycle accident cases, for more than 34 years. We can help Texas motorcycle accident victims and their families better understand motorcycle insurance laws and what happens after someone has been seriously injured or wrongfully killed in a crash.

If you have questions or wish to speak to a Fort Worth motorcycle accident lawyer about your circumstances, please call or email us for a free case evaluation.

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