Ashland & Paintsville Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Motorcyclists are more likely to be injured in an accident than car drivers. Simple physics dictates that the majority of force experienced by the cycle will be transferred to the rider, while a car driver is protected by a more massive shield. No matter how much protection a motorcyclist wears, he or she will likely be injured during an accident.
Even if you are relatively unharmed, odds are your motorcycle has sustained damage, as well. Neither hospital bills nor repair costs are cheap, and motorcyclists tend to come off the worst in the legal arena unless they are careful and prepared.
Many people consider motorcycle riders reckless. Insurance adjusters are not immune to this misperception. If you are a motorcyclist involved in an accident, take care to establish yourself as a safe rider. Wear all the recommended safety equipment, including a helmet and eye protection.
Although Kentucky only requires helmets for riders under 21 or who have had their license for under a year, a helmet protects against head injuries and conveys that you are concerned with safety. Wearing a helmet leaves the impression that you understand the risks of motorcycle riding and have taken the appropriate steps to mitigate them. Eye-gear is also not required, though wearing it can contribute to a rider’s safety and responsibility.
If you have taken motorcycle handling courses, emphasize that to the assessors. This informs them that you are focused on making your riding as safe as possible. This can be further emphasized by mentioning you have a record as a safe two-wheel driver, if that is the case. If you have been driving any vehicle without any accidents or citations in the past 10 years, emphasize this record, too.
Accidents are often assumed to be the fault of the motorcyclist. Therefore, when you are involved in an accident, document everything: what you did, what the other driver did, and witness impressions. Any evidence that could show you were not the reckless party should be collected.
This includes accidents where there is no vehicular contact. If another driver is driving poorly, he or she is just as at fault in a no-contact accident as in a multi-vehicle crash. When a motorcyclist crashes in an attempt to avoid a crash caused by someone else’s negligence, the other driver is liable.
Even if you are deemed partially at fault in the accident, Kentucky law allows you to recover some compensation for your damages. Kentucky is a comparative fault state, so individuals involved in motor vehicle accidents can recover the damages they are not at fault for. Again, appropriate safety gear is key. If you have head or eye injuries, your share of the damage assessment could be reduced because you were not at fault for those injuries.
Single Vehicle Accidents
Only 50% of motorcycle accidents involved another vehicle. In addition to incidents where a cyclist attempts to avoid a crash, motorcycles are more vulnerable to certain road hazards than cars are. Potholes are particularly dangerous to riders. These can be the result of long-term wear or poor quality repair work. In either case, the local transportation authority may be liable for damages, similar to a slip and fall accident on public property. The comparison is particularly apt in the case of long-term damage to a roadway, where a recent flaw may be grounds for a no-fault ruling but an established problem proves fault.
In all accidents, having the help of a legal expert can give you an idea of what you can do and the expected outcome. Salyer Law specializes in personal injury cases and will take the time to visit you wherever necessary to learn the specifics of your case. For advice after you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, contact us for a free consultation.