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Avoiding the Most Common Motorcycle Accidents - Jones Law Group

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Avoiding the Most Common Motorcycle Accidents

There are many benefits to riding a motorcycle. Besides being more fuel efficient and more environmentally friendly than cars, they are arguably more fun to drive. However, because they are so exposed to the outside world, riders must remain cautious and prepared for anything to happen on the road. Motorcyclists are 27 times more likely to die in a crash compared to a passenger vehicle, and more than five times as likely to be injured.

Here are some of the most common motorcycle accidents and how to avoid them:

Left-hand Turns in Front of You

One of the most common motorcycle accidents occurs when an oncoming vehicle makes a left-hand turn in front of (or into) a motorcycle. Motorcycles run the risk of being less visible than motor vehicles due to their smaller size.

How to avoid an accident:

As a motorcyclist, you must always be aware of your surroundings and be prepared to make evasive actions in any foreseeable circumstance. Why? Because your life could depend on it. Motorcyclists must be able to see other drivers and anticipate what they could do. Be prepared for drivers to misjudge right-of-ways or simply not see you, and prepare accordingly.

Cars Merging into Your Motorcycle

Many drivers on the road have trouble seeing motorcycles either due to blind spots or inattentive driving. It is easy for a motorcycle to be overlooked when a vehicle is changing lanes or merging. Drivers are more accustomed to glance in their blind spots looking for automobiles than motorcycles, and it can be difficult to tell if they can see you at all.

How to avoid an accident:

Try to spend a minimal amount of time in other drivers’ blind spots. As a general rule of riding a motorcycle, always try to anticipate any situations that could become dangerous. Keep an eye out for signs of lane changing, such as wheels beginning to turn or the driver checking his/her blind spot.

Being Rear-ended

When stopped at a traffic light, it may seem you are helpless to vehicles behind you who are not paying attention or simply do not see your motorcycle. However, there are a couple actions you can take. Whereas a 15 MPH rear end collision is usually a minor inconvenience for automobile drivers, a motorcyclist involved in such a crash could be killed.

How to avoid an accident:

When you come to a stop at a traffic light, stop towards the side of the road instead of in the middle of the lane. This way, if you see a car coming up fast behind you, you have a way to escape danger. If a car is coming and you don’t foresee it stopping, flash your brake lights to show the driver that you are there, and then pull off the road to avoid impact if you must.

Taking a Turn too fast, or Hitting Sand or Debris when Turning a Corner

Although motorcycles are designed to be fast and easy to control, taking corners too fast is a common error for riders, and can be deadly. Sharp turns or sand on the road can cause you to lose total control of your motorcycle.

How to avoid an accident:

If there is a turn coming up, ride slow and steady, and remain on the brakes. After you hit the apex of the turn, let off the brakes and begin to accelerate. Also remain cautious of any debris or other dangers on the road.

Locking up the Front Brake

Emergency situations can happen without notice. There are many situations where you may have to brake abruptly, such as an accident, an animal in the road, or sudden stopping of traffic. Most of the bike’s stopping power comes from the front brake. So using the rear brake more will result in a longer stopping distance. But relying on the front brake could result in over-braking. If the front brake locks up, it could lead to your weight shifting the bike enough to lift the back wheel and throw you over the handlebars.

How to avoid an accident:

Make sure you spend time getting to know your bike. Find an empty parking lot to practice if you need to. Test the sensitivity of both brakes, and learn how to use them smoothly. This way, you will instinctively be able to react to sudden braking safely.

Drinking and Riding

Though this should go without saying, it is worth mentioning, as it is a factor in up to 50% of all motorcycle wrecks. Motorcycles require more balance and coordination than cars. A minor lapse in judgment while riding could send you flying off the bike and getting severely injured, or worse.

How to avoid an accident:

Don’t drink and ride. Don’t take the risk. It’s not worth it.

Contact a Motorcycle Accident Attorney to Review Your Injury Claim

Because motorcycle riders are so exposed, being involved in any type of motorcycle accident can be dangerous. And there can be serious consequences such as traumatic brain injuries, spinal injuries, road rash, muscle damage, and more.

Have you or a loved one been injured in a motorcycle accident? Contact an experienced St. Petersburg motorcycle accident attorney at Jones Law Group today. You may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and rehabilitation costs. These are known collectively as damages.

When you contact our office we will immediately set an appointment where you will meet your attorney and be provided with his/her personal contact information. If you do not have transportation or you cannot drive, your attorney will travel to meet you and discuss your case with you.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident caused by the negligence of another, you should immediately call an experienced personal injury attorney in St. Petersburg at Jones Law Group at (727) 571-1333 during regular business hours or (727) 753-8657 on weekends or after regular business hours. We will evaluate your case for free. You will never pay us a dime unless we recover compensation for your injuries.

Jones Law Group
5622 Central Avenue
St. Petersburg, FL 33707


About the Author

Heath Murphy is a partner at Jones Law Group and focuses on personal injury law. He has been working as a lawyer for 18 years and routinely writes about auto accidents, wrongful death, and personal injury laws.

Read more: Heath’s Bio