Motorcycle accidents can occur suddenly and unexpectedly, leaving motorcyclists with life-altering injuries and other complications. In addition to physical injuries and large medical bills, motorcycle accident victims often find themselves unable to immediately return to work. For these reasons, accident victims should not hesitate to speak with Kruger & Hodges’ skilled motorcycle accident lawyers in Hamilton, Middletown, and Eaton, OH who will fight to make sure that they receive adequate compensation from the parties responsible for their injuries.
According to Forbes, motorcycle riders are 28 times more likely to lose their lives in a fatal collision than drivers of passenger vehicles and four times as likely to sustain severe injury. In 2020, 82,528 motorcyclists sustained serious or catastrophic injuries following a collision, and 5,579 motorcyclists lost their lives—the highest number of motorcycle fatalities since 1975.
August appears to be the most dangerous month for motorcyclists, with 14 percent of all fatal motorcycle accidents happening in this back-to-school month. Although only 3 percent of all registered vehicles are motorcycles, motorcyclists account for 14 percent of all traffic fatalities. More than a third of all motorcycle crashes involve the driver of the passenger vehicle exceeding the speed limit.
According to the Ohio State Highway Patrol, between 2018 and 2022, the number of motorcycle crashes increased every single year, including 927 fatal motorcycle crashes that killed 953 motorcyclists. On average, there are 175 fatal motorcycle accidents each year in Ohio, accounting for about 16 percent of all fatal traffic accidents. While many people are quick to blame motorcyclists for many of these accidents, the truth is that riders are not wild and reckless merely because they choose to travel by bike. In the majority of cases, motorcycle accidents in Ohio are the fault of the motor vehicle operators involved.
There are some important issues to understand when it comes to following Ohio’s motorcycle laws. Some important regulations that motorcyclists must remember to follow include:
Ohio law does not prohibit lane splitting. The concept of splitting refers to sharing a lane with another vehicle. The state, however, does require that motorcyclists exercise due care when passing vehicles.
The Difference Between Motorcycle Operators and Passengers: Motorcycle passengers are rarely at fault in an accident, which is why they are almost always in a better position to obtain compensation. Passengers can often obtain compensation from either the operator of a motorcycle, the other vehicle driver involved in the accident, or both. Whether you are injured or impacted as an operator or a passenger in a motorcycle accident, however, it is critical to understand that you have rights. This includes the right to pursue compensation.
Motorcycles versus Mopeds: Mopeds were once viewed as an ancestor of motorcycles, but these vehicles have since made a significant comeback. Not only are there national moped clubs, but there are also moped clubs throughout Ohio. While some mopeds come with the same un-exposed dangers as motorcycles, they also offer fewer acceleration, braking, and handling features than motorcycles.
Ohio law defines mopeds as any vehicle with two tandem wheels or one wheel in the front and two in the rear, capable of being pedaled, equipped with helper motors of no greater than 50 cubic centimeters of piston displacement, producing no more than one brake horsepower, and being incapable of propelling a rider more than 20 miles an hour on a level surface. If mopeds do not meet these criteria, the vehicles are classified as motorcycles and a rider must have a valid motorcycle license to use.
One of the reasons why motorcycle accidents tend to be much more severe than automobile accidents is that motorcycles lack a vehicle’s hard exterior, which serves to soften impact and protect vehicle occupants when collisions occur.
Some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents include:
While many people who enjoy riding motorcycles also enjoy hanging out at the local bar or pub, combining alcohol or any type of drug with the operation of a motorcycle can lead to deadly accidents. Statistics reveal that alcohol is a contributing factor in approximately 50% of all motorcycle accidents. If you have been injured in an accident caused by a drunk driver, call our motorcycle accident lawyers in Hamilton, OH.
Many different injuries can result from Ohio motorcycle accidents, but some of the most common injuries incurred by motorcyclists include:
Insurance companies are dedicated to paying out as little as possible to victims after accidents occur. Before negotiating matters with the responsible party’s insurance company, it is a wise idea to speak with our experienced motorcycle accident lawyers in Hamilton, Ohio for guidance.
Our knowledgeable motorcycle accident lawyers in Hamilton will be able to determine if the amount being offered by the insurance company is fair and adequately compensates the victim for the injuries that occurred due to the accident. Taking just any offer that is made by an insurance company can result in a victim accepting an amount that is less than adequate to cover basic medical expenses.
Some of the steps that you can follow after a motorcycle accident to make sure that you have the strongest case possible include:
Some of the emergency services you might require following a Hamilton, OH motorcycle accident include:
Ohio is classified as an “at fault” state, which means that a person can file an insurance claim under their own insurance policy if they have the appropriate damages from a responsible party. The minimum requirements under Ohio law include:
While motorcycle accidents are often serious in nature, there are fortunately a number of steps that motorcyclists can take to avoid the risk of ending up in one. Some of these steps include:
In Ohio, a person must wear a helmet if he or she is 17 years of age or younger. This means that people older than 17 are not required to wear a helmet. Remember, however, that failure to wear a helmet can end up playing a substantial role when it comes to the liability involved with your lawsuit. Ohio follows a form of comparative negligence law. This means that if you are more than 50% liable for an accident, you are unable to collect damages from the other party. If you are 5% responsible for an accident, for example, the amount of compensation you ultimately recover is reduced by this amount. Insurance carriers sometimes argue that a person’s failure to wear a helmet is a sign of comparative negligence.
The quickest answer to understanding the average value or amount of a motorcycle accident claim is to understand that there is no set dollar amount for accidents of this kind. Instead, each motorcycle accident is unique. This is because the details surrounding each motorcycle accident vary drastically. One of the best ways to assess and fight for the maximum value of your motorcycle accident case is to retain the assistance of an experienced motorcycle accident attorney.
Selecting the ideal attorney is paramount following a motorcycle accident in Hamilton, Ohio. Your decision holds immense significance, as adept legal representation is highly valued by insurance companies.
When searching for a suitable personal injury lawyer for your motorcycle accident case, take into account these essential factors:
Following a consultation with a lawyer from Kruger & Hodges, your decision will become evident. Our dedicated attorneys are resolute in safeguarding your rights as you navigate the aftermath of a motorcycle accident. Big insurance companies simply have more respect for those who are legally represented and, therefore, will not attempt to engage in common delay, deny, and devalue tactics. Once you are legally represented, you can rest easy, knowing your attorney will fight for an equitable settlement on your behalf.
If you or a loved one is involved in a motorcycle accident, an experienced motorcycle crash attorney can analyze the facts of your case to help determine the amount of compensation that you deserve. Speak with the Hamilton, OH motorcycle accident lawyers at Kruger & Hodges today to schedule an initial free consultation. From start to finish, our firm will remain committed to making sure that you obtain the compensation you deserve.