In general, most motorcycle accident litigation cases involve two drivers. When someone is driving negligently, and an accident occurs, the party not at fault can seek compensation for their damages. These are common cases handled through injury claims and lawsuits.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle crash due to unkempt roadways, you deserve to be compensated for your injuries. You should not have to cover expenses that were not your fault. An experienced Sacramento motorcycle accident attorney with Triumph Law will fight to get you justice for your injuries.
Risk of Motorcycle Usage
Cooperation from all road users and safe riding practices by motorcyclists can reduce the number of fatalities that occur nationwide. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 5,932 motorcyclists were killed in 2021. This is the highest number of riders killed since the year 1975.
Motorcyclists face unique challenges when on the road due to their size and visibility to other motorists. Newer riders may not have the experience they need to avoid unknown dangerous conditions. Motorcyclists must practice safe riding and limit risky behavior such as lane splitting and weaving.
Accidents involving motorcyclists are much worse than automobile accidents due to the lack of protection for riders. Proper safety gear for riders and their passengers is crucial. Riders who use approved safety helmets can help minimize the severity of injuries they could face during a crash.
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When a motorcyclist heads out for a ride, they have to be at the top of their game, staying alert to other motorists, pedestrians, and road conditions. No matter how hard a motorcyclist tries to stay safe, some things are out of their control, especially road hazards. A variety of roadway hazards can exist for motorcyclists, including:
- Rough seams – After a road is completed, the middle seam should be minimal, but this is not always the case. If a motorcycle were to hit an uneven seam while passing another vehicle, it could be hazardous.
- Gravel – Gravel roads tend to be very difficult for motorcyclists. Loose gravel on paved roadways can cause an issue as well as gravel causes the motorcycle’s front wheels to slide out.
- Bad design – Just about everyone has been on a road that was a little iffy; maybe there was a particularly tight curve or blind corner with no guard rail. This can be very dangerous and must be dealt with by the governing entity prior to someone being injured.
- Railroad crossings – Railroad crossings must be properly marked so drivers can watch for trains and take proper care whenever they cross them. Railroad crossings can be rough for vehicles but even rougher for motorcycles.
Other Common Road Hazards
When a motorcycle crash occurs, and it is not the fault of another driver, but the fault of the road, seeking compensation becomes more complicated. Most motorcyclists have encountered bad roads, but every time a bike is taken for a ride on a rough road, big risks are taken. Not much will happen when a vehicle drives over a pothole or loose gravel, but if a motorcyclist hits loose gravel or a pothole, it could mean a nasty accident.
Other maintenance and design flaws that can contribute to motorcycle accidents include:
- The malfunctioning or absence of traffic signals
- Lack of reflective markers
- Faded center lines
- Overgrown vegetation
- Misplaced or insufficient road and warning signs
- Missing guardrails
- Improper banking of curves
- Inadequate lighting
- Shoulder drop-offs
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Liability and Compensation for Roadway Defects
The major difficulty when seeking compensation for a motorcycle crash caused by any sort of road defect is generally, there is not just one person responsible. Rather than going after an at-fault driver as you would with most accident cases, you must seek compensation from the city or state responsible for that roadway’s maintenance. In order to seek compensation, your motorcycle accident lawyer must be able to prove liability.
As expected, the state or city will work very hard to get themselves out of having to pay you for a crash they caused since they did not want to spend the money to maintain that road in the first place. Many government entities will attempt to insist that the accident was your fault rather than their own. This is why it is critical to have a knowledgeable motorcycle accident lawyer helping you with a vastly more complicated claim against the government.
The city or state entity responsible for the road is going to bring in their best attorneys to save themselves both reputation and money. A knowledgeable attorney can evaluate the success rate of your motorcycle accident case. They can inform you of the chances of winning and the compensation you can seek from the responsible party.
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Damages from a Motorcycle Accident
Your lawyer can help you gather the necessary evidence to seek compensation from the liable party. Your attorney will review your medical records and police report and gather photographic evidence to prove the liable party is responsible for compensating you for your damages. In California, you can seek compensation for two types of damages, known as compensatory damages.
Economic damages include the financial losses you faced from the accident. They are strictly monetary. Examples of economic damages could include:
- Lost wages
- Medical expenses
- Property damage
- Household services
- Out-of-pocket expenses
The second type of loss you can seek compensation for is non-economic damages. These include the less tangible damages that make up a large part of your claim, such as pain and suffering. Other examples of non-economic damages could include:
- Loss of enjoyment of activities
- Emotional anguish
- Loss of consortium
- Reduced quality of life
Connect with Triumph Law for Help Today
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident due to poor road conditions, you deserve compensation for your injuries. Our dedicated motorcycle accident lawyers with Triumph Law will not back down until justice has been served and you have been made whole from the losses you suffered. Contact us today to discuss the details of your case using our secure online form.