Because of their size, motorcycles that are involved in accidents typically endure a lot more damage than your average passenger vehicle would.
The nature of motorcycles being exposed to the elements also means that injuries to the driver and/or rider can be far more severe than those sustained in a car accident. Serious neck and back injury are common, and fatalities happen more often then you might think.
The most recent statistics come from 2013 and reveal that in that year, 4,381 motorcyclists were killed as a result of accidents. What’s truly interesting is how different age groups fit into that statistic.
Stats from as far back as the 70s show that around 80% fatalities occurred in users who were under the age of 29. However, right around 2009, that changed, with the majority of fatalities now occurring in the 50 and over age group.
Regardless of your age, riding a motorcycle is a responsibility that should be taken seriously and practiced with great caution. Common sense and a watchful eye can go a long way towards preventing certain accident scenarios, but the fact of the matter is you just never know what’s going to happen.
If you or a loved one has gone through a motorcycle accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical expenses, lost pay, and more. The attorneys at Cox, Cox, Filo, Camel & Wilson L.L.C. offer decades of experience helping victims of motorcycle accidents and their families seek damages for serious injury or wrongful death.
Motorcycle Accident Do’s and Don’ts
As with any vehicle accident, there are certain things to avoid and certain steps to take. What happens in the minutes immediately following a motorcycle accident can have a serious impact on your case.
Knowing what to do in that moment can help relieve some of the stress of the situation and put you in a better place for filing a personal injury law suit. The following do’s and don’ts may be used as a guideline for what should and shouldn’t be done after a motorcycle accident.
- Call the Police: Whether the driver who caused the accident has stuck around or fled the scene, contact the police ASAP.
- Seek Medical Attention: Whether you feel injured or not, there are a number of injuries that can occur without any noticeable signs. You may feel fine, but remember that you’re most likely going to be in some kind of shock. Our bodies do not alert us to pain as effectively when in shock, so always have a doctor inspect you for both internal and external injuries.
- Get to a Safe Spot: Highway accidents are particularly dangerous due to their tendency to create debris and cause rubbernecking, which only has the potential to cause more accidents. Even if you were on a smaller surface street, try to move your bike and any other vehicles involved off to the side and out of the way of traffic, if possible.
- Try to Find Witnesses: If you’re lucky, someone who saw the accident will pull over to give a statement to the authorities. You can also look around the area to see if any pedestrians who witnessed the accident were present and ask if they’d be willing to provide their contact information so that a statement can be taken at a later date, if needed.
- Take Pictures: This is a staple for any accident. Take pictures of your motorcycle, other vehicles involved, the scene, and any injuries. Take as many pictures as you can from every angle you can. The more the better.
- File a Claim with Your Insurance Company: This isn’t to say give a recorded statement, but do call them to let them know what happened and provide them with contact information for the other drivers and their insurance companies.
- Contact Family or Friends: This is especially true if you are being taken to a hospital. It’s always good to let someone close to you know what’s going on and where you are so that they won’t worry if they don’t se/hear from you when they expected to.
- Journal about the Events: Taking notes from your perspective can really help you remember the details. From the incident itself, to any pain you experienced, to medications and treatments you’ve been prescribed, just write it all down.
- Get in Touch with a Lawyer: Insurance adjustors, recorded statements, claims, these are all things you’ll have to deal with in the aftermath of an accident. A Lake Charles motorcycle accident attorney at Cox, Cox, Filo, Camel & Wilson L.L.C. can not only handle most of this for you, we won’t charge you anything unless your case comes to a successful settlement.
- Leave the Scene: Unless you’re being taken away in an ambulance for emergency treatment, stick around, talk to the police, and get information from the other drivers involved.
- Argue with the Other Driver(s): It’s just not worth it. This only has the potential to weaken your case and shine a bad light on yourself.
- Talk to an Insurance Adjustor: They may claim to have your best interests at heart, but in reality, they don’t. Their sole purpose is to try to confuse you, causing you to say something that will either hurt your case or make it look like your original statement was not truthful.
- Make Speculations: No matter how much you believe the other party was at fault for the accident, don’t say so. Speculations are another thing that can taint your reputation.
- Accept Any Settlement Offers: Even if you keep conversations with insurance adjustors to the bare minimum, they’ll still likely try to make you an offer. Never ever accept the first offer you get. In fact, don’t accept any offer until you’ve discussed it with your attorney.
- Give a Recorded Statement without a Lawyer Present: A recorded statement can be the nail in the coffin when it comes to your claim. Anything you say can and will be used against you if possible. Having a lawyer with you at the time of the interview will allow him to tell you what you should and should not answer.
- Be Scared: The best advice is to stay as quiet as you can and keep your wits about you. Stay calm. Do this and garner the help of an attorney at Cox, Cox, Filo, Camel & Wilson L.L.C. and remember, everything will be ok.
Motorcycle Accident Injuries
As we’ve mentioned, the level of exposure that a motorcycle has can often make for severe injuries. If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries, medical bills, and time off from work. Some common motorcycle accident injuries include:
- Road Rash
- Broken Bones
- Internal Bleeding/Organ Damage
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Partial/Complete Paralysis
- Traumatic Brain Injuries
- Severe Bruising
- Neck and Back Injuries
- Muscle Tearing/Damage
Loss of life is not only a possibility resulting from a motorcycle accident, it’s a common occurrence. Many times, the accident is caused by another driver who is driving while distracted or driving recklessly.
If one of your loved ones suffered wrongful death at the hands of a negligent driver, you, as the next of kin, may have a case to seek damages. Often, next of kin can seek compensation for medical expenses, funeral expenses, loss of future income/support, and even a variety of emotional damages.
Get Help Now
Cox, Cox, Filo, Camel & Wilson L.L.C. has been around for a long time. In fact, we’re one of the oldest and most respected personal injury groups in southwestern Louisiana. Whether your insurance claim is being disputed or you need help seeking compensation for your injuries after a motorcycle accident, our Lake Charles lawyers are here for you.
We take cases on a contingency fee basis. That means we only get paid if you do. And as always, our consultations are free and confidential. Contact us today or call us at 337-240-9349. We’ll evaluate your case and determine if you may be eligible to receive financial compensation for your injuries.