There are few things that feel more freeing than taking to the road on a motorcycle. Unfortunately, a lot of drivers don’t give riders the space they need to be safe, and that puts bikers and their passengers in danger. At Mezrano Law Firm, we know that a bike wreck often leads to life-long injuries. A Birmingham motorcycle accident lawyer will fight hard to get the compensation you need after a crash. Call us today to find out how a trusted motorcycle accident lawyer can help.
According to Drive Safe Alabama’s most recent data, there were 1,918 accidents involving motorcycles in 2017; 1,222 injures and 79 fatalities were reported. In short, almost 64% of all motorcycle accidents led to some kind of injury – more than double the injury rates for car accidents that same year.
There is no debate that Alabama is an ideal state for a motorcycle ride. The hills and valleys of the Appalachian Plateau, as well as the pine forests in Talladega, offer gorgeous views. In the Birmingham area, it’s common to see bikers traveling along the Central Alabama Loop, or traveling around Smooth Lake between Crane Hill and Bremen. We even have our own “mini Dragon,” if you take I-20 to US 25.
The problem with these routes, however, is that many are not unique to riders. That means you have to share the road with drivers who may or may not give you the space you need to ride safely. A collision with a car could leave you with serious injuries.
The hills of Appalachia may be pretty, but they provide little visibility even under the best of conditions. Tighter curves make it more difficult to maintain lanes (especially when sharing the roads with tractor-trailers), and there is always a risk of road debris traveling down the hills, and collecting at the bottom.
The other risk for riders is in the very soil of our roads. Bama soil – the state soil of Alabama – is mostly sand and loam, which makes it ideal for planting. It does, however, tend to erode when it’s exposed on a slope. What that means is that roads and trails along our hills are less stable. Add that to Jefferson County’s tendency to used less dense asphalt when paving, and it can be very easy for a rider to skid or slide out, especially after a dry season.
Because motorcycles offer less protection, the injuries you sustain in a crash can be far more severe. Even if you are wearing a helmet, it may not be enough to prevent all level of injury (though it could be the difference between being injured and being killed). Other injuries include:
Road rash is a “cutesy” name for the severe lacerations and scratches you can sustain if you are thrown from your bike. It is rooted in the act of a body literally sliding across the road, sometimes for multiple yards. That type of trauma can literally skin you to the bone, and can leave you with serious disfigurement. You may need skin graphs to treat the condition, and the risk of infection setting in can be high.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, “Helmets are about 37 percent effective in preventing motorcycle deaths and about 67 percent effective in preventing brain injuries.” On the one hand, wearing a helmet decreases your chance of dying on the road. On the other hand, they are not 100% effective. So, should you wear one?
Absolutely yes, you should! Not only is it the law in Alabama, but the data shows that you are more likely to survive a crash when you’re wearing a helmet. You can still be injured even with a helmet, but it can decrease your risk of death or brain injury by measurably high percentages.
Furthermore, if you are hit by a car and you sustain head injuries because you weren’t wearing a helmet, you could be barred from collecting any award, even if the accident was not your fault. This is because of Alabama’s strict contributory negligence laws. The law states that if you are in any way responsible for your own injuries – if you contributed to them in any way – you can be barred from collecting damages. A defense attorney will argue that by breaking the law and not wearing a helmet, you are to blame for the severity of your injuries – and a judge is very likely to see it that way, too.
If you have sustained a serious injury after a crash on your motorcycle, Mezrano Law Firm is ready to help:
On top of it all, we prepare your case as if you were going to trial. Even if you decide a settlement is better for you, insurance companies may offer you a more just settlement award from the start when they realize that you have come prepared to take your personal injury claim to court, if necessary.
If you sustained injuries in a motorcycle wreck in Birmingham, the motorcycle accident lawyer you choose can make all the difference to your future. At Mezrano Law Firm, we know the stakes. Let an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer help. To schedule your free consultation, please call 205-206-6300 or fill out our contact form.
If you have a case, you have a lawyer. Call us today to learn more.