Kevin and Heather are avid motorcycle riders who love the thrill of Florida’s open roads and the freedom that comes with it. They have been riding motorcycles for years, and it has become a big part of their life together. However, they recently learned that a close friend was in a serious motorcycle accident and recovering from his injuries.
Their friend’s accident made them think about the risks of riding a motorcycle and served as a reminder of the importance of becoming more aware of their safety on the road. They know they cannot give up their passion for riding but also want to ensure they do everything possible to minimize the risks.
In Florida, where warm weather and scenic roads attract many motorcyclists, the risks of crashes are high. To help you stay safe on the road, we have compiled a list of the five leading causes of motorcycle accidents in Florida.
If you or a loved one gets in a motorcycle accident, let us personally fight for you to get fair compensation for your injuries. At Cohen and Juda, P.A., our South Florida motorcycle accident lawyers have over 30 years of experience serving motorcycle accident victims. Call us at (954) 424-1440 to schedule your FREE consultation.
What Are the Chances of Getting into a Motorcycle Accident?
Motorcycles are a common sight on Florida roads, yet they remain one of the state’s most vulnerable vehicles. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcyclists are 28 times more likely to die in a crash and four times more likely to be injured than car passengers.
Next, let’s look at five leading causes of motorcycle accidents in Florida that contribute to these sobering statistics.
1. Lack of Awareness by Other Drivers
Motorcycle riders are more vulnerable than car drivers, as they do not have the protection of a car’s frame, airbags, and seat belts. Unfortunately, many car drivers fail to see or anticipate motorcycles, especially when changing lanes, turning, or entering an intersection.
Distracted driving, such as texting, talking on the phone, or eating, can also reduce the attention of drivers and increase the likelihood of a collision.
To reduce your risk of being hit by a car or truck, make yourself visible by wearing bright colors and reflective gear, using your headlights and turn signals, and positioning yourself in the lane where you can be easily seen.
2. Speeding and Reckless Driving
Motorcycles are often associated with speed and thrill, but exceeding the speed limit and engaging in reckless driving can have fatal consequences. Speeding reduces your reaction time and increases the force of impact in case of a crash, making it harder to avoid or survive a collision.
Reckless driving, such as weaving in and out of traffic, tailgating, or ignoring traffic signals, endangers you and puts other road users at risk. To stay in control of your motorcycle, obey traffic laws, adjust your speed to the road conditions, and avoid risky maneuvers.
3. Impaired Driving
Riding your motorcycle while intoxicated is a serious offense that can lead to injury, death, and legal consequences. Even if your blood alcohol level is below the 0.08% legal limit for driving in Florida, impairments to your judgment, vision, coordination, and balance can occur.
Alcohol and drugs can also increase aggressiveness, confidence, and risk-taking behavior, leading to poor decision-making and reduced situational awareness. To prevent impaired driving, plan ahead, designate a sober driver, use public transportation or ride-sharing services.
4. Poor Road Conditions
Florida’s roads can be challenging for motorcycle riders, as they may be uneven, wet, slippery, or filled with debris. Potholes, gravel, sand, and oil spills can cause a loss of control, a skid, or a crash. In addition, road construction and maintenance can create detours, narrow lanes, or unexpected obstacles that require quick reflexes and maneuvers.
To prepare for poor road conditions, check your tires and brakes regularly, adjust your speed and position to the surface and weather, and stay alert for warning signs and markings.
5. Mechanical Failures and Defects
Motorcycles, like any motor vehicle, require regular maintenance and inspection to ensure their proper functioning and safety. Malfunctioning brakes, tires, lights, or steering can cause a breakdown, a loss of control, or a collision. In addition, manufacturing defects or recalls can affect the performance of a motorcycle and put riders at risk.
To avoid mechanical failures and defects, follow the manufacturer’s instructions for maintenance and repairs, perform a pre-ride check before every trip, and respond promptly to any warning lights or unusual noises.
What to Do If You’ve Been in a Motorcycle Accident?
If you’ve been in a motorcycle accident in Florida, there are several steps you need to take to protect your health and legal rights. Here’s what we advise:
Seek medical attention
The first and most important step after a motorcycle accident is to seek medical attention. Even if you feel fine, you need to get checked out by a doctor to ensure you have no underlying injuries.
Contact the police
Contact the police and report the accident. It’s critical to have an official record of the accident, including a police report, as it will be useful when you file an insurance claim.
Collect as much information as possible at the scene of the accident. This includes the name, contact information, and insurance information of the other driver(s) involved in the accident and any witnesses who may have seen what happened.
Take pictures of the accident scene, including any damage to your motorcycle, the other vehicle(s) involved, and any injuries you may have sustained.
Contact your insurance company
Contact your insurance company as soon as possible to report the accident. Your insurance company will guide you through the process of filing a claim.
Consult with a personal injury attorney
If you’ve been injured in the accident, consult a Plantation personal injury attorney or motorcycle accident attorney. An attorney can help you understand your legal rights and guide you as you pursue compensation for your injuries.
Most personal injury attorneys offer free consultations and work on a contingency basis. This means they do not get paid unless you win your case.
By following the steps outlined above, you can ensure you have the best possible chance of receiving fair compensation for your injuries and damages.
What Is Florida Doing to Prevent Motorcycle Accidents?
In response to the high number of motorcycle and bicycle accidents each year in Florida, Florida Highway and Safety and Motor Vehicles and the Florida Highway Patrol launched an annual “Share the Road” Campaign in 2022.
Another program addressing the issue is “Ride Smart Florida,” an outreach and communication extension of the Florida Motorcycle Safety Coalition (FMSC). The members of FMSC are safety advocates from all over the state committed to reducing motorcycle-related deaths.
You can read more about Ride Smart Florida and access their free resources for motorcyclists on education and training, safety strategies, motorcycle data, and more here.
Have You Been in a Motorcycle Accident in Florida? Call Cohen and Juda, P.A. to Schedule Your FREE Consultation
If you’ve been involved in a motorcycle accident in Florida, it is critical to take action as soon as possible to protect your legal rights and pursue compensation for your injuries. At Cohen and Juda, our team of experienced motorcycle accident lawyers is here to assist you.
We offer a FREE consultation to discuss your case and determine the most suitable course of action for your circumstances. Our dedicated team will advocate for you to ensure you receive the best possible outcome. We will take the time to understand your case, answer your questions, and provide you with guidance and advice every step of the way.
We will not back down from insurance companies or other parties who may be liable for your injuries. Our law firm has been helping clients seek damages for their injuries and restore their lives for over 30 years, and we are here to help you too.
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The information in this blog post (post) is provided for general informational purposes only and may not reflect the current law in your jurisdiction. No information in this post should be construed as legal advice from the individual author or the law firm, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting based on any information included in or accessible through this post without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer licensed in the recipient’s state, country, or other appropriate licensing jurisdiction.