Summer is just around the corner. It’s the time when motorcycles are everywhere in the New England area. While motorcycles are fun to ride, they can also be extremely dangerous. The numbers tell the story. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), in 2015, 4,976 motorcyclists and passengers died in crashes. Nonfatal injuries that year totaled 88,000. Fatalities among motorcycle riders and passengers have risen nearly 3 percent from 2006 to 2015, driven largely by an 8 percent increase in 2015. The roads are becoming increasingly dangerous, and with summer right around the corner, you have a heightened risk of being involved in a Rhode Island motorcycle accident lawsuit.
Tips for Motorcycle Safety
It is essential for both motorists and motorcyclists to realize the importance of sharing the roadways. Motorists must understand safety challenges faced by motorcyclists, especially with regard to size and visibility. There are also several steps motorcyclists can take to stay safe on the road:
- License and training: Driving a car and riding a motorcycle require different sets of skill and knowledge. Motorcyclists should get the appropriate licensing and training that will help them operate safely and efficiently.
- Safety gear: If you are ever involved in a motorcycle accident, your best chance of protecting yourself from suffering a brain injury is to wear a helmet. It is important that you choose a helmet that meets the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 218. The certified helmets will have a DOT symbol on the outside back of the helmet. Be sure your helmet has a face shield.
A certified helmet will also have a permanent inside label identifying the manufacturer and providing information about the care and use of the helmet. When you ride a motorcycle, always wear long pants and long sleeved shirts and protect yourself with good quality leather jackets and boots. Additionally, wearing brightly colored clothing with reflective material will make you more visible to other drivers.
- Rules of the road: Both motorists and motorcyclists should follow the rules of the road including obeying traffic lights, posted speed limits and lane markings. Ride with the flow of traffic and leave plenty of room between vehicles. It is best to ride your motorcycle in a defensive manner. A number of motorcycle crashes occur because drivers fail to see motorcyclists, particularly at street intersections.
- Drinking and driving: Alcohol and drugs including prescribed medications can negatively affect riders’ judgment, coordination, balance and throttle control. Drugs and alcohol can also affect alertness and reduce reaction time. This is of course true for motorcyclists and motorists.
Call d’Oliveira & Associates Today
If you have been injured as the result of a motorcycle accident, it is important that you understand that you have legal rights. Injured victims of motorcycle accidents may be able to seek compensation for damages including medical expenses, lost income, hospitalization, rehabilitative treatment, pain and suffering and emotional distress by calling the RI motorcycle accident lawyers. The experienced motorcycle accident lawyers at d’Oliveira & Associates can help injured victims and their families better understand their legal rights and options. Call us at 1-800-992-6878 to obtain more information about pursuing your rights.