Most experienced motorcycle riders understand riding is more dangerous that driving. Unfortunately, there are many events that could cause a rider to crash, ranging from small bumps in the road to full speed disasters and construction zones. Against this backdrop, the Colorado Motorcycle Accident Lawyers at Bowman & Chamberlain, LLC, will address the most serious types of accidents riders get into.
Minor Motorcycle Accident
Low speed, minor injury situations happen often. A patch of gravel or a sharp turn can result in a minor accident for even the most experienced rider. Unfortunately, some inexperienced riders may not recognize these perils or appreciate how to navigate around them safely. All riders should take a motorcycle riding course to understand the conditions surrounding the activity and proper technique for handling these situations because minor accidents are very frequent and can happen in a moment’s notice.
When riders approach a blind corner, the chances of getting into an accident increase. In these types of situations, “Slow In, Fast Out” is an effective rule of thumb. Experienced riders tend to reduce speeds going into a blind corner, and subsequently speed back up on the way out, once they can see all the way through. Another helpful tip is for riders to enter a blind corner wide, effectively increasing their vision.
Oftentimes, riders will meet a patch of gravel, increasing the likelihood of getting into an accident. Trail braking is a slightly more advanced skill that helps reduce this likelihood. The motorcyclist brakes all the way to the apex using the front brake before swapping brake for throttle. Since the bike’s weight is distributed forward, compressing the front suspension and increasing the size of the front tire’s contact patch, the rider can easily apply a little more brake or widen it by letting off. This is a very helpful measure to help avoid obstacles such as gravel.
Another advanced skill, which is controversial in America, is for riders to maximize vision by using the full width of the road, regardless of lanes. Increased vision leads to safer riding. Riders should, however, learn how to operate a biker safely from a trained professional.
Left-Turn Motorcycle Accident
This type of accident occurs when a driver turns in front of a motorcyclist at an intersection, most often because the driver failed to spot the bike. The driver’s inability to see the rider may be predicated on inattentiveness, distraction, or even psychology, in that some drivers perceive merely an absence of vehicles and not the presence of a motorcycle. To avoid this type of accident, riders should always recognize signs which could indicate someone may turn. These signs include a vehicle waiting to turn, a gap in traffic, a driveway and parking lot. In addition, riders should slow down, cover their brakes, and be ready to take evasive actions.
Lane-Changing Motorcycle Accident
This type of accident occurs when a driver suddenly veers into the space a motorcyclist is occupying. The reality is that motorcycles pale in comparison to the size of motor vehicles. They easily fit into blind spots and many drivers looking for vehicles are not psychologically programmed to also spot for motorcycles. To reduce these types of accidents, riders should be aware of where blind spots lie and spend as little time in them as possible. If a rider can see the driver’s eyes in mirrors, they have the ability to see the rider as well.
In addition, riders should become aware of situations where lane changes are more possible. If highway traffic is slowing, for instance, riders should be cognizant that some drivers may switch into a faster-moving lane without warning. Riders should look for signs of a vehicle changing lanes, including turn signals, wheels turning, and the vehicle weaving inside one lane as the driver checks mirrors.
Rear-End Motorcycle Accident
This type of accident occurs when a driver fails to see a rider slowing or stopped ahead, striking the bike from the rear. Riders should be aware of their surroundings. When vehicles are coming from behind, for example, riders can pull in front of a vehicle so as to cushion themselves from any subsequent impacts. If there are no vehicles in front, the rider can stop to the side of the lane, rather than the center of the lane. Riders can also rapidly flash their brake lights.
Motorcyclists should be particularly aware in situations where there is bad visibility or when drunk driving is more prevalent. They should also be more aware in situations when stops are unexpected, such as pedestrian crosswalks on busy streets.
Riding a Motorcycle Can be Dangerous
Riding a motorcycle is a very dangerous task. Riders should always remember to look at the wheels of the vehicle and not the vehicle itself. Should the rider need to take evasive actions, they will need to know the best route to escape danger.
A motorcyclist’s best chance of survival comes from shedding as much speed as possible prior to the impact. Losing 10 to 20 miles per hour could be the difference between surviving and dying. The single best way to avoid becoming the next motorcycle statistic is to pay attention while operating their bike. Many motorcycle crashes can be avoided by constant vigilance and education about the safest way to ride.
Contact Our Colorado Motorcycle Accident Lawyers
If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident, contact our attorneys today at 720.863.6904 or email us for your free consultation. Our lawyers handle a wide range of personal injury cases, including Motor Vehicle Accidents, Bicycle Accidents, Pedestrian Accidents, Slip & Fall Accidents, and Dog Bites & Attacks. We service Arvada, Aurora, Boulder, Broomfield, Denver, Commerce City, Lakewood, Littleton, Thornton, Westminster, Wheat Ridge, and other parts of metropolitan Denver, Colorado.
Owner and Managing Attorney
Jerry Bowman, J.D., M.A., Owner and managing attorney of Bowman Law LLC, takes his responsibility to the legal profession seriously and dedicates his time and effort to providing quality and competent legal representation to clients in Denver and throughout all of Colorado. He holds an MA in Political Science from Wayne State University and earned his law degree in two and a half years from Michigan State University College of Law.