Motorcycle riders are sometimes unfairly labeled as reckless risk-takers, but negligent drivers in other vehicles often cause motorcycle accidents. Get legal help from a skilled lawyer after a motorcycle crash.
Even though motorcycle riders get a bad reputation for being dangerous, many motorcycle crashes happen because other drivers ignore riders, speed, or fail to check blind spots. Since riders are not protected inside an enclosed vehicle, they are susceptible to severe injuries. As such, damages and emotional distress tend to be significant. We need evidence demonstrating the defendant’s negligence to convince a jury of your claims. Witnesses, dashcams, medical records, and more should be investigated.
Speak to our Knoxville motorcycle accident lawyers at Howe Law for a free claims assessment by calling (844) 876-4357.
How Another Driver Might Have Caused Your Motorcycle Collision in Oak Ridge, TN
Motorcycle riders are often very knowledgeable about road safety and are careful to avoid accidents. On the other hand, drivers in cars often disregard motorcycle riders and are usually responsible for causing crashes.
Speaking of the way drivers seem to disregard or outright ignore riders, this phenomenon is sometimes referred to as inattentional blindness. Essentially, drivers often focus on other cars, not motorcycles. When a motorcycle crosses their path, they are not as careful as they should be simply because they are not expecting to see a motorcycle. Motorcycle riders are entitled to use the roads and highways like everyone else, and inattentional blindness might be a good explanation for many motorcycle accidents, but it is not an excuse.
An important factor to consider in almost any motorcycle accident is speed. Riders are not shielded within enclosed vehicles and are likely to be thrown from their bikes if another vehicle strikes them at a high speed. Generally, the faster the other car drives, the worse for the motorcycle rider. Our motorcycle accident attorneys can help you find evidence to show how fast the defendant was going when they hit you.
Blind spots are another major concern. Since motorcycles are smaller than typical cars, they can easily be hidden in a car’s blind spots. This means that drivers must be cautious when turning or changing lanes in the presence of motorcycles. Failing to check a blind spot might cause serious injuries to an unsuspecting motorcycle rider.
How Serious Are Injuries and Damages in Motorcycle Accident Cases in Oak Ridge, TN?
Motorcycle accidents are infamous for how badly riders can be injured. As mentioned before, riders do not have the luxury of being protected inside a closed vehicle. Instead, they are exposed to the open air with only the clothes on their back and protective gear (e.g., helmets, pads, gloves) to protect them. While this gear can be lifesaving, it does not prevent all injuries.
Broken bones, cuts, bruising, and road rash are somewhat common in motorcycle accident cases. While these injuries are very painful, they often fully heal in time. Riders also experience more severe injuries that come with long-term or lifelong complications.
Riders have suffered spinal cord injuries that lead to permanent paralysis and mobility issues. Riders have suffered traumatic brain injuries, despite wearing a helmet, that lead to lifelong cognitive disabilities. Riders have suffered such severe injuries that they live with substantial permanent scarring.
Severe injuries often mean extensive damages. First, you must contend with the high cost of medical care. For those with more complex or severe injuries, medical care might be ongoing and very costly. You also must deal with replacing or repairing your motorcycle. On top of all these new expenses, you might be unable to work because of how badly you are hurt and lose significant earnings. These losses and costs must be factored into your damages calculation.
The psychological effects of a motorcycle accident also deserve attention. These are often very serious accidents, and victims sometimes have difficulty moving on. Whether the trauma from the crash itself still haunts you or the distress of living with permanent injuries or complications weighs heavily on your mind, you deserve compensation for everything you have gone through.
Proving the Defendant’s Negligence in Your Oak Ridge, TN Motorcycle Crash Claim
In many motorcycle crash cases, defendants do not mean to cause harm. Even so, that does not mean they are absolved of responsibility. A defendant may still be held liable for their negligent behavior.
What You Need to Prove
To prove that the defendant was negligent when they caused the accident, we need to establish the legal elements of duty, breach, causation, and damages. Each element must be proven for your case to be successful. Even if a single element is not sufficiently proven, your case might fall apart.
What does it mean to provide sufficient evidence? What makes evidence sufficient? While the jury ultimately has the final say on whether the evidence supports your claims, we must meet the burden of proof.
The burden of proof refers to the strength of the evidence necessary to establish negligence. Most people have probably heard of the burden of proof in criminal trials, which is proof beyond a reasonable doubt. In a civil case, like a motorcycle crash, our burden is a preponderance of the evidence.
In short, we need to present enough evidence that shows it is more likely than not that the defendant acted negligently and caused your accident. While this is not as high of a burden as in criminal cases, it is still difficult to meet, and you should speak to an experienced lawyer about your case.
Evidence to Prove Negligence
Photos and videos from the accident can be illuminating in numerous ways. Photos might show street signs, road conditions, and even weather conditions that change how we view the case.
Security cameras are everywhere nowadays, and there is a chance that one was nearby when your motorcycle crash happened. Such footage might show us exactly how the accident happened and who caused it.
After the police respond to the crash, they might conduct a more thorough investigation. When their investigation is complete, they issue a crash report. The report might contain details that we overlooked or missed. For example, if the police spoke to witnesses, the names and contact information of those witnesses might be in the report for us to use.
Speak to Our Oak Ridge, TN Motorcycle Accident Attorneys About Your Claims
Speak to our motorcycle accident lawyers at Howe Law for a private, free claims assessment by calling (844) 876-4357.