May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, and a great time to remind everyone to be alert and share the road with motorcyclists. Even with all the efforts to educate both motorcyclists and motorists, motorcycle crashes happen often, and when they do, the results are often devastating to those involved.
With little protection surrounding their bodies, motorcyclists are 27 times more likely to die in a crash than those who are involved in a similar crash in a vehicle. Thousands of bikers hit our scenic roads of Lancaster County every day, so we wanted to take a closer look at:
- Statistics Surrounding Motorcycle Crashes
- Pennsylvania’s Motorcycle Helmet Law
- 6 Steps to Take Immediately After Motorcycle Crashes
Statistics Surrounding Motorcycle Crashes
Because of the risks associated with riding motorcycles, it is important to pay particular attention to the numbers. The following data helps in the education and advancement of safety equipment for all motorists on the road.
In 2018, the latest year for which data is available:
- Motorcycles accounted for 2.1% of all motor vehicle accidents (2,714 crashes)
- Of the 2,714 motorcycle accidents, 14.4% were fatal (159 bikers died)
- 2,394 motorcycle crashes involved injuries
- Of the 2,714 motorcycle accidents, only 161 bikers escaped injury
- Of all the fatalities involving motorcycles in 2018, 153 were drivers and 11 were passengers
- Total motorcycle crashes decreased by 15% over the previous year, while motorcycle fatal injury crashes decreased by nearly 12% over the year prior
- Of the fatal motorcycle accidents, 40% were wearing helmets while 56% percent were not (4% of the cases are unknown)
Pennsylvania’s Motorcycle Helmet Law
In 2003, Pennsylvania lawmakers voted to make wearing a helmet optional for any rider who is 21 years or older, and who had more than two years of riding experience. Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety continue to urge bikers to take the extra precaution of wearing a helmet, pointing to the fact that the helmets reduce risk of head injury by 69 percent and the risk of death by 42 percent.
Georgelis Injury Law Firm has seen families, devastated by motorcycle accidents. Whether a biker chooses to wear a helmet or not, when they are injured, they are entitled to compensation when it is due to the negligence of someone else. There are a few steps every injured biker should take, however, following an accident to ensure they have the best chances for maximum compensation.
6 Steps to Take Immediately Following Motorcycle Crashes
After being involved in a motorcycle accident, an experienced personal injury attorney can help you recover compensation for any property damage or injuries that took place as a result of the accident. To ensure favorable results, you should:
- Be Mindful of What you Say– When someone is involved in an accident, it is easy for emotions to take over. Often, accident victims say things at the scene of the crash that hurt them later. It is critical that you pay attention to the words you are saying when you are talking to police, witnesses, and insurance companies after the crash. Your words CAN BE USED AGAINST YOU! Never admit fault, even if you are not initially sure of who caused the accident. Contact an experienced personal injury attorney before speaking to an insurance company.
- Seek Medical Attention– If you are injured as the result of a motorcycle crash, do not downplay your injuries. If you refuse treatment and then your injuries worsen (which they often do when the adrenaline wears off), the insurance company will maintain you had no injuries as the result of the collision. This can prevent you from recovering full compensation needed to cover your medical expenses.
- Call the Police – If you are injured, or your bike is damaged, police should be called. This is another critical step when it comes to filing a personal injury claim. Keep a copy of the police report and double check it for errors as soon as possible and then notify an attorney of the discrepancies.
- If Possible, Document the Scene – A picture can be worth a thousand words, and when it comes to personal injury cases, it can be worth thousands of dollars in compensation. Document everything you can. Property damage, the crash site, your injuries—take pictures and notes on everything! Debris can be cleaned off roads, damaged motorcycle parts can be lost, and injuries can heal over time. Documentation will give you a stronger case.
- Take Notes on Everything Following Your Accident – Injuries sustained in a motorcycle crash can have a major impact on your everyday life. You may be unable to return to work, school or your social world until you completely recover from your injuries. Be sure to document the times and dates of these events that have been missed, along with any lost income resulting from your injuries.
- Call a Personal Injury Attorney Right Away – at Georgelis Injury Law Firm, we review each case for free, and there is never a fee until we secure money for you. The sooner you call an experience attorney following an accident, the better your chances of winning your case. We will help guide you through the entire process, making certain there are no missteps along the way.
Call Georgelis First!
When you’re injured in a motorcycle accident, or any accident for that matter, Call Georgelis First! Our experienced, aggressive and successful attorneys have helped countless bikers get the compensation they deserve. In fact, we have won more than 99% of our cases and recovered more than $50,000,000.00 for our clients, including awards in excess of one-million dollars for motorcycle riders involved in accidents.
If you want the maximum compensation for your motorcycle accident injuries, we can help build your claim the way it should be. Our experienced, seasoned trial lawyers will aggressively fight to defend your rights! If you’re hurt, call 1-800-HURT-NOW. And remember, we never collect money until we get compensation for you!
We are available 24/7 and to protect you during these times, we can handle everything without face-to-face communication.