What To Do In Case Of A Motorcycle Accident

motorcycle accidentHave you been injured while riding your motorcycle in Alabama or Mississippi? Pepper & Odom personal injury Attorneys have experience with motorcycle accidents and we are ready to handle your case!

Millions of Americans own motorcycles that enjoy riding for pleasure and taking advantage of a fuel-efficient mode of transportation. Motorcycles provide virtually no protection in an accident, unlike automobiles that are fully enclosed.

This means any injuries you suffer will likely be severe or even life-threatening. Motorcycles also are much smaller than most vehicles on the road, so they’re often overlooked by other motorists.

Common Causes Of Motorcycle Accidents

Motorcycle accidents account for nearly 15 percent of all motor vehicle fatalities. In 2020, there were 30,573 motorcycles registered in Mississippi and 114,901 registered in Alabama. 

The most recent data on motorcycle accidents from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) names Mississippi as the most dangerous state in the U.S. for motorcyclists. Some of the most common causes contributing to motorcycle accidents include:

  • Vehicles turning left in front of a motorcycle
  • Vehicles side-swiping a motorcycle
  • Head-on collisions with other vehicles
  • Motorcyclists hitting fixed objects
  • Road hazards
  • Weather conditions
  • Lane splitting
  • Vehicle malfunctions
  • Speeding
  • Distracted or fatigued driving
  • Alcohol and/or drug impairment

The majority of motorcyclist fatalities occur in multiple-vehicle collisions. Automobile drivers who collide with motorcycles are often found at fault for these accidents and frequently state they didn’t see the motorcyclist until it was too late.

Protect Yourself

Failure to wear a helmet also contributes to many fatalities that may have been avoided. Alabama and Mississippi both enforce helmet laws that require every motorcyclist, drivers and passengers, to wear a helmet no matter their age.

Choose DOT-certified helmets for maximum protection. Replace your helmet every five years, or sooner if it is damaged.

Other protective gear should include leather or thick clothing, including long sleeves and pants; sturdy boots and gloves; and goggles to protect your eyes, if your helmet does not include a visor.

WHAT SHOULD I DO AFTER A MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT?

First things first, if you are able, check your current situation and take in your surroundings. You should check your position and your person to make sure you aren’t in harm’s way or severely injured.

If you are not, leave the roadway and check for anyone else who was involved in the collision. Try to help anyone you can to safety, unless you have sustained severe injuries.

KEEP YOUR PROTECTIVE GEAR ON

Always remember to keep your helmet and any other protective gear on as you wait for paramedics to arrive at the scene. This may keep you from worsening any injuries you have before medical help arrives.

Some people will not realize they have injuries immediately following an accident. Typically, your body and mind will be in a state of shock after a wreck because of endorphins and adrenaline.

These chemical reactions in the brain can cause you to not feel pain from any injuries you may have.

CALL 911 AS SOON AS POSSIBLE

Once you are safe, before you remove any of your protective gear, report the accident by calling 911. Police and paramedics may come to the crash site depending on the magnitude of the accident.

SEEK MEDICAL ATTENTION IMMEDIATELY

After an accident, it is best to be checked by a medical professional even if you think you have no injuries. Sometimes it can take even some of the most severe injuries from a day up to a month to appear.

You are majorly susceptible to serious internal damage, internal bleeding, and broken bones if you are on a motorcycle during an accident. Again, if you are capable, call 911 to get medical attention as soon as possible following the accident.

Gather As Much Evidence As You Can

If you are able, begin gathering information as evidence as soon as possible. Whatever the case of the accident is, gathering evidence immediately after is always a great idea.

Take notes, take your own pictures, and be sure to get a copy of the police report. Be sure to exchange insurance information and any other contact information with the other driver.

WHEN SHOULD I SPEAK WITH AN ATTORNEY?

“When should I speak with an attorney?” If you are asking yourself this question, the answer is simple: as soon as possible. Most insurance companies will attempt to offer the lowest amount of recovery for your claim, but having the right attorney could help you negotiate a more desirable compensation.

Always consult with an attorney before accepting any resolutions or settlements. Your lawyer can then consult with your insurance company on your behalf.

However, be sure to speak with the insurance company in a timely manner, regardless of who contacts them. Hiring a knowledgeable motorcycle accident attorney is the first step towards getting your settlement.

For example, our team of experts at Pepper & Odom have experience in many forms of personal injury, including motorcycle accidents. Having an experienced attorney with knowledge of the court system on your side can be crucial to maximizing your claim.

Hire A Top Motorcycle Accident Injury Lawyer

It is usually the motorcyclist that is effected the greatest in motorcycle accidents. If you or a loved one was injured while riding a motorcycle, a motorcycle  injury lawyer at Pepper & Odom can help.

We work hard to ensure you get the maximum compensation you deserve. We represent personal injury clients statewide in Alabama and Mississippi and offer free initial consultations.

Plus, no recovery, no fee! Contact us online or you can reach us at our office in Birmingham, Alabama at 205-250-1107. If you would like to reach our office in Jackson, Mississippi, call us at 601-202-1111 and let us get started on your case today!