Motorcycle Accident Attorneys serving all of Sonoma County
There are about 8.4 million motorcycles on the road in the U.S. Every year, there are thousands of motorcycle crashes, resulting in more than 4,500 deaths. In fact, motorcyclists are 26 times more likely than motorists and passengers to die in a car crash. They are also 5 times more likely to be injured. With the propensity for injury while riding a motorcycle, it’s essential to have a skilled Santa Rosa motorcycle accident lawyer on hand in the event of a crash.
Many groups are advocating for motorcycle safety. While this has led to a slight decrease in motorcycle accident crashes, the numbers are still disheartening. Motorcycle accidents can cause exceptionally severe injuries, especially when high speeds are involved. There are several risk factors to be aware of when driving a motorcycle that make accidents more likely to occur:
- Motorcycles are hard to see. Other drivers have a hard time seeing motorcyclists, particularly at intersections.
- Motorcycles are susceptible to road hazards. Unlike a car, motorcycles can be dramatically affected by small hazards, like debris, wet pavement, and potholes.
- Motorcycles do not offer protection against the road. If a motorcyclist is projected of the bike, he or she has very little defense.
- Motorcycles are not very stable. Some are prone to wobbling at high speeds, which can cause the driver to quickly lose control.
Liability in a Motorcycle Accident
While minor motorcycle accidents may be covered by either driver’s insurance, there are many times where the insurance caps are not enough. In this case, you would need to work with an experienced Santa Rosa injury lawyer to file a personal injury claim in order to recover damages.
Many motorcycle accidents are due to the car drivers’ negligence. Personal injury cases require proof that the defendant acted negligently, which caused injury. Negligence is comprised of several separate considerations:
- The defendant had a legal duty to exercise reasonable care. Motorists are expected to follow the rules of the road and be aware of other drivers, motorcyclists, bicyclists, and pedestrians.
- The defendant did not act in a reasonably careful way. Speeding through a red light or failing to check mirrors before turning can be considered negligence.
- The defendant’s negligence directly caused the accident and therefore your injuries.
- Because of this accident, you suffered injuries and damage.
There are many situations where the driver of the car would be considered somewhat negligent. For example, if you were cut off by a motorist who failed to check mirrors or use a turn signal before switching lanes, the driver would be considered negligent. Additionally, there are some cases where the accident may have been caused by a defective part or design. This would necessitate a product liability claim.
A defective part may be the responsibility of the manufacturer, dealership, or even the supply store, while a dangerous design may mean the vehicle maker is liable. California follows a comparative negligence clause, which means that you may still collect compensation even if you are partially at fault for your own accident. For example, if you are found to be 30% at fault, you will receive the remaining 70% of total compensation. If you are found more than 50% at fault, you will not be eligible to receive any compensation.
Experienced Santa Rosa Motorcycle Accident Lawyer | Sonoma County
To understand your rights after an injury in a motorcycle accident, contact the North Bay Legal firm today. Based out of Santa Rosa, we serve all of Sonoma County and the surrounding areas.
Our Santa Rosa motorcycle accident attorneys provide effective representation and can help you recover financial losses due to medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. We fight aggressively for our clients and take the time to walk them through every step of the process. Our goal is to get you the money you need to get your life back on track.