Motorcyclists are at greater risk on the road than occupants of passenger and commercial vehicles, for several reasons.For example:
For these and other reasons, motorcyclists make up a disproportionate number of traffic fatalities. Motorcycles make up only about 3% of the vehicles on the road and account for less than 1% of vehicle miles traveled. But, about 14% of those killed in traffic are motorcyclists and their passengers.
Motorcyclist fatalities were up significantly in 2022, both in New Hampshire and around the country. That’s part of a trend across recent years. Between 2012 and 2021, the number of motorcycle fatalities nationwide increased by 18.9% The increase is partly attributable to a significant increase in the number of motorcycles on the road. However, that doesn’t account for the full increase. The fatality rate based on the number of vehicle miles traveled had increased by more than 29% across the same time period.
As a smaller state with a smaller number of motorcycles and fewer vehicle miles traveled, New Hampshire sees relatively few motorcycle deaths each year. However, the state has not been immune to the increase in motorcycle fatality rates. In 2021, there were 26 motorcycle deaths in the state: 22 riders and 4 passengers. In 2022, that number jumped to 32: 31 riders and 1 passenger. That’s an increase of 18.75% year-to-year.
Much of the responsibility for avoiding motorcycle crashes lies with drivers of larger, heavier motor vehicles who often fail to see or to adjust for motorcycles on the road. Negligent acts like distracted driving can have a far greater impact when the distracted driver hits a motorcyclist rather than another passenger vehicle, since a motorcycle rider (like a pedestrian or bicyclist) can be killed or severely injured even in a low-speed collision.
However, motorcyclists can take many steps to protect themselves on the road. These include:
Responsibility for motorcycle accidents is determined in the same way it would be for another type of motor vehicle accident. If a driver, the motorcyclist, or another party negligently caused or contributed to the accident, they may be wholly or partly responsible for the accident. Some common examples of negligence in motorcycle accident cases include:
To learn more about the compensation that may be available after a New Hampshire motorcycle accident, contact an experienced motorcycle crash attorney as soon as possible after the injury. Attorney Kevin P. Broderick has been fighting for injury victims in Massachusetts and New Hampshire for years, and has the knowledge and experience to put together the strongest possible case on your behalf. Call 978-459-3085 right now to schedule your free consultation.
In New Hampshire, motorists are not required to carry liability insurance. That includes motorcyclists. If the driver or motorcyclist who is responsible for an accident does not have insurance, they are personally liable for any injuries. If the injured party opted to purchase uninsured motorist coverage, their own insurance carrier may cover their damages. However, they will still have to prove the damages, and that the uninsured driver was responsible.
The best way to find the right New Hampshire motorcycle accident lawyer for you is to look for a lawyer who has experience with cases like yours, then schedule a free consultation. Use your consultation to learn more about the attorney’s related experience, and to ensure that they are responsive to your concerns and answer your questions in a way you understand. You will need to be comfortable communicating with your attorney about personal matters as your case moves forward.
About 25% of motorcycle fatalities involve “supersport” bikes, though these models make up only about 10% of the motorcycles on the road. These bikes have more power and less stability than a standard model, meaning they require greater precision to operate successfully. Another variable may be the habits of riders who choose this type of motorcycle. Speed is more than twice as likely to be a factor in a fatal supersport crash as in fatal crashes involving other types of motorcycles.
If you’ve suffered a serious injury in a motorcycle accident, it is in your best interest to connect with an experienced Massachusetts motorcycle accident lawyer as soon as possible. It’s easy to make small mistakes that can hurt your claim, and it can be difficult to know what a fair settlement looks like. Many insurance companies will try to take advantage of your inexperience to steer you into a quick settlement that doesn’t cover all of your damages.
Not wearing a helmet won’t preclude you from pursuing damages after a motorcycle accident that was someone else’s fault. However, it may impact the amount of compensation you receive. For example, if you suffered a head injury, the responsible party will likely bring an expert witness to testify that the injury wouldn’t have happened or would have been less severe if you’d been wearing a helmet. If they convince the jury, they may not be held responsible for that part of your damages.
Your first steps after a motorcycle accident are the same as with any motor vehicle accident. Tend to your health and safety first. If you are able, take photographs, make notes, and collect contact information from any witnesses to the accident.
Let Attorney Kevin Broderick answer your questions and evaluate your personal injury or vehicle accident case for free!
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