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Motorcycle Accidents Attorney in Los Angeles, California

According to the Motorcycle Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcyclists are 24 times more likely to die in traffic crashes than passenger vehicle occupants, and they’re four times more likely to be injured. This statistic alone showcases the seriousness of a motorcycle accident.  

The aftermath of an accident includes life-altering injuries and even death. If you or a loved one has been in a motorcycle accident, you may be wondering what to do next. 

First, it’s important to remain calm and take the necessary steps to ensure your safety and well-being. The first thing to do after a motorcycle accident is to get medical attention; just as important is to get in touch with a professional California personal injury lawyer.  

Having an attorney by your side can make all the difference in the months and even years that follow. At Antaramian Law, APC, I dedicate my knowledge and experience to helping individuals and families who have been impacted by these tragic incidents. Here's what you need to know about motorcycle accidents. 

Why Are Motorcycle Accidents So Fatal? 

Motorcycle accidents are tragically fatal due to several reasons. The most prominent one is the lack of protection for riders. When you're on a motorcycle, there's nothing between you and the asphalt. In the face of a collision, this exposure can drastically increase the chances of severe injuries or fatalities.  

Moreover, motorcycles being smaller in size and less visible on the road make them more susceptible to accidents. Other drivers may overlook motorcycles or misjudge their speed and distance, leading to disastrous consequences.

Additionally, the inherent instability of motorcycles can pose challenges in maintaining control during sudden stops, sharp turns, or adverse weather conditions. These factors collectively contribute to the high fatality rate associated with motorcycle accidents. 

Causes of Motorcycle Accidents

Several factors can lead to motorcycle accidents, and the negligence of other drivers on the road is a common cause. Accidents often occur when drivers fail to yield the right of way to motorcycles, make unsafe lane changes, or engage in distracted driving activities, such as texting or talking on the phone. 

Speeding is another significant cause of motorcycle accidents. The ability of motorcycles to reach high speeds quickly can reduce reaction time to unexpected situations or hazards on the road. Furthermore, impaired judgment due to alcohol or drug use is a prevalent factor in many motorcycle accidents. Lastly, hazardous road conditions like potholes or debris can be particularly dangerous for motorcycles due to their smaller size and unstable nature. 

Determining Liability in a Motorcycle Accident

Determining who's at fault in a motorcycle accident involves assessing the actions and responsibilities of all parties involved. This includes investigating the actions of the motorcycle rider, other drivers, and any contributing factors, such as road conditions or mechanical failures. 

In most cases, liability is determined based on negligence. If a driver fails to exercise reasonable care, and their actions directly result in the accident, they may be held liable for the damages. However, it's crucial to gather evidence, witness statements, and expert opinions to establish a clear picture of the events leading to the accident and determine liability accurately. Reach out to my firm for assistance with these items.

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Motorist Responsibilities

Motorists should contribute to the safety of all road users, including motorcyclists. In California, there are specific laws and responsibilities that drivers must follow to reduce the risk of accidents.  

One of the primary responsibilities is to maintain a safe following distance. California law does not specify a set distance because the “safe” distance can vary depending on speed, road conditions, and traffic density. However, drivers are encouraged to leave at least a three-second gap between their vehicle and the motorcycle in front of them. 

Lane splitting, where a motorcycle rides between two lanes of stopped or slowly moving cars, is legal in California. Motorists must be aware of this and should check their mirrors and blind spots carefully before changing lanes, especially in slow-moving traffic. Furthermore, California’s Three Feet for Safety Act requires drivers passing bicycles—and by extension, motorcycles—to maintain a distance of at least three feet between their vehicle and the cyclist. 

Abiding by these laws, as well as exercising general care and attention, can significantly reduce the chances of accidents involving motorcyclists. It's crucial for drivers to recognize the increased vulnerability of motorcyclists and to adjust their driving habits accordingly to ensure the safety of all road users. 

California Lane Splitting Law

In California, we have a unique law that allows lane splitting, which refers to the practice of motorcycles riding between lanes of stopped or slow-moving traffic. However, there are specific guidelines in place to ensure the safety of both motorcyclists and other drivers.  

According to California law, motorcyclists can engage in lane splitting if they do so in a safe and prudent manner. This means riding at a reasonable speed and being cautious of surrounding vehicles. However, lane splitting is prohibited in certain situations, such as when traffic is moving at high speeds or in unsafe conditions. 

Reporting an Accident in California

If you're involved in a motorcycle accident in California, it's crucial to understand the laws regarding reporting the accident. Any motorcycle accident resulting in injury, death, or property damage exceeding $1,000 must be reported to the California Highway Patrol (CHP) or local law enforcement within 24 hours or 10 days for common carrier vehicles (buses, taxis, etc.). 

When reporting an accident, it's essential to provide accurate and detailed information about the incident. This includes the date, time, location, parties involved, and any injuries sustained. This information will be critical for insurance claims, legal proceedings, and determining liability.

Motorcycle Accidents Attorney in Los Angeles, California

The aftermath of a motorcycle accident can be overwhelming and stressful. That's where I come in. As an experienced attorney who has worked with insurance companies for years, I understand their tactics and know how to fight for the compensation you deserve. Whether you're dealing with insurance claims, medical bills, or legal proceedings, I'm here to help. Reach out today for a consultation, and let's secure your future together.