A man died when his motorcycle collided with a Freightliner truck on Wicks Road. A hit-and-run sedan driver killed a 29-year-old motorcyclist on the Jericho Turnpike. A 27-year-old motorcyclist was seriously injured, then later died, after a collision with another vehicle in Hempstead Village. These examples all happened in the first three weeks of March 2022 on Long Island.
Motorcycle riders often extol the sense of freedom that no car can offer. Riders feel the wind against their face and a deep connection to their surroundings. But this feeling of liberty also comes with increased vulnerability. There’s little protection when an accident occurs.
If you or a loved one is injured in a New York motorcycle accident caused by someone else’s negligence, contact the astute legal team at Collins Gann McCloskey & Barry PLLC. You may be eligible for compensation.
Motorcycle Crash Statistics
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcyclists are 29 times more likely to die in a traffic crash than occupants of a passenger car. Across the U.S. in 2019, 5,014 motorcyclists were killed and 84,000 injured in road accidents.
Some other interesting statistics about motorcycle accidents:
- 77% of crashes involving two vehicles and a motorcycle involves the motorcycle being struck in the front
- 136 motorcyclists died in New York crashes in 2019
- More than 300,000 motorcycles are registered in the Empire State (31,574 in Suffolk County and 18,322 in Nassau County)
- Of 4,728 motorcycle crashes in New York in 2020, 75% involved non-fatal injuries and almost 4% involved the loss of life
- Nassau County was the site of 269 motorcycle accidents in 2020 while Suffolk County had 366
Several factors can contribute to a motorcycle accident, including the following:
- Open Car Doors. Drivers and passengers open their car doors without looking first
- Left Turns. Not seeing the motorcycle, the oncoming driver turns left causing the motorcycle to hit the side of the vehicle.
- Red Light Violations. Since motorcycles take up less physical space, some motorists take a cursory glance before gunning it as a light changing to red.
- Unsafe Lane Changes. The motorist does not thoroughly check their surroundings, including their blind spots, before changing lanes.
- Debris and Environment Factors. Pieces of a tire, improperly secured loads, unmarked potholes, and more can lead to motorcycle accidents.
Considering that 75% of motorcycle accidents involve injury compared to 27% in vehicle crashes, it is easy to see that more motorcyclists will need to be compensated for their injuries.
Negotiating with the Insurance Company
Not all personal injury cases end up before a jury. These cases generally begin by negotiating with the insurance company. Having an experienced lawyer to handle all discussions with the insurance company is crucial. Insurance will always try to minimize their financial exposure.
Insurance companies will attempt to turn the facts to support themselves and make you appear to share more of the responsibility. New York is one of twelve states that follow pure comparative negligence. That means any potential award is reduced by the amount the plaintiff is deemed at fault. This rule applies to lawsuits for damages from personal injuries, property damage, as well as wrongful death.
Our attorneys at Collins Gann McCloskey & Barry PLLC understand personal injury law inside and out. Private investigators, witnesses, physical evidence, and more are utilized to build the strongest case possible to maximize a settlement.
Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit
Sometimes the best course of action is to take a personal injury case to court. The four elements that must be proved in a personal injury case are duty of care, breach of duty of care, causation, and damages. We understand how to best argue your case to improve the chances of winning your personal injury case.
Three types of damages can potentially be awarded in personal injury cases. New York has no caps on how much compensation is awarded.
Economic damages can include the following:
- Past and Future Medical Bills
- Lost Wages
- Loss of Future Earnings
- Damaged Property
- Other Quantifiable Expenses
Non-economic damages can include the following:
- Pain and Suffering
- Loss of Consortium
- Mental Anguish
- Loss of Enjoyment in Life
- Physical Impairment and Disfigurement
New York also allows for punitive damages in personal injury cases. Meant to punish, punitive damages are only available if the responsible party’s behavior showed willful negligence, wanton recklessness, a conscious disregard of safety, or dishonest intentions.
Protect Your Right to Seek Compensation
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident that was caused by someone else, don’t delay taking action. You only have three years after an accident to file a lawsuit. The sooner the accident the better as evidence is better preserved and memories are as fuzzy.
After proper medical attention, your next priority is obtaining intelligent and insightful legal counsel. Schedule a consultation with Collins Gann McCloskey & Barry PLLC to fully understand your rights. Reach out to us online or call (516) 218-5131.