Motorcycle Accident Attorney Missouri
In 2018, 82,000 motorcyclists were injured with just under 5,000 killed. According to the National Highway Safety and Transportation Administration, motorcycles comprise 3 percent of all registered vehicles in the United States, yet account for only 0.4 percent of all miles traveled. Per vehicle mile traveled, motorcyclists, are about 37 times more likely than passenger car occupants to die in a motor vehicle accident and 8 times more likely to be injured. Furthermore, motorcyclists are more likely to be involved in fatal collisions with fixed objects than are other vehicles.
According to the Brain Injury Association of America, brain injury is the leading cause of death in motorcycle collisions. A non-helmeted motorcyclist is 40 percent more likely to suffer a fatal brain injury and 15 percent more likely to suffer a non-fatal brain injury than a helmeted motorcyclist. Motorcycle helmets are 37 percent effective at preventing fatality and save approximately 1500 lives each year.
In short, motorcycle accidents are much more likely to result in serious or life-threatening injuries than any other type of vehicle-related accident. If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident, chances are that you have to deal with injuries that force you out of commission while you heal. That means medical bills, lost work, and the potential for long-term side effects from your injuries. As experienced motorcycle accident lawyers in St. Louis, Ryan R. Cox & Associates, LLC understands what you are going through, and we can help.
Determining Fault In Motorcycle Accident Cases
Although drivers tend to blame motorcyclists’ “reckless” behavior for accidents, statistics indicate that it is actually other drivers who cause motorcycle accidents. In fact, one study showed that other drivers caused motorcyclist accidents roughly 60 percent of the time. The most common causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- Distracted driving
- Failing to look for smaller vehicles (like motorcycles)
- Moving lanes without signaling
- Turning in front of motorcycles (using while making a left-hand turn)
- Pulling out in front of motorcyclists
- Misjudging the speed or distance of a motorcycle
Showing that the other driver is at fault is important in motorcycle accident cases. Your St. Louis motorcycle accident lawyer can help you build your case against the other driver after your accident. At Ryan R. Cox & Associates, LLC, we gather evidence on your behalf, walk you through your potential damages, and work hard to get you the compensation that you deserve after an accident.
Motorcycle Accidents Can Cause Serious Injuries
Motorcycles offer very little in terms of protection for their occupants. There is practically nothing between you and the road, other than perhaps relatively limited safety gear like padded clothing and a helmet. While this freedom is often what makes motorcycles so appealing, this lack of protection leads to serious injuries, and they occur in much higher numbers than other vehicles.
In fact, motorcyclists are over 25 times more likely to die from a crash than those who ride in passenger cars. They are also five times more likely to be injured according to the Insurance Information Institute.
You May Be Entitled To Compensation
Medical bills add up quickly after a serious accident. In fact, medical bills are one of the main reasons that clients bring a personal injury claim after an accident. Bringing a successful personal injury claim will force the party at fault to pay for your medical expenses that are related to your injury. You may also be able to collect other damages, including:
- Lost wages
- Loss of consortium or companionship
- Compensation for permanent impairment or disability
- Future medical expenses
- Pain and suffering
In situations where you have lost a loved one in a St. Louis motorcycle accident, you may also be able to collect damages related to funeral expenses. Nothing can replace your loved one, but a personal injury or wrongful death case can help with the financial burden after a serious motorcycle accident.
Call Today For Legal Guidance
As a motorcyclist, you have the same rights as any other vehicle on the road. Ryan R. Cox & Associates, LLC, can help you assert those rights. Call 636-946-6886 to set up a free consultation with an experienced member of our personal injury team. There is no obligation and our consultations are always free – call today!
Motorcycle Accident Information Center
- According to most recent estimates, 88,000 motorcyclists are injured per year, with 4,810 of those being killed. In 2006, 93 fatalities resulted in Missouri from motorcycle accidents.
- According to the National Highway Safety and Transportation Administration, motorcycles comprise 3 percent of all registered vehicles in the United States, yet account for only 0.4 percent of all miles traveled. Per vehicle mile traveled, motorcyclists are about 37 times more likely than passenger car occupants to die in a motor vehicle accident and 8 times more likely to be injured. Furthermore, motorcyclists are more likely to be involved in fatal collisions with fixed objects than other vehicles. In 2006, 25 percent of the motorcycles involved in fatal collisions collided with fixed objects, compared to 18 percent for passenger cars.
- According to the National Highway Safety and Transportation Administration, brain injury is the leading cause of death in motorcycle collisions. A non-helmeted motorcyclist is 40 percent more likely to suffer a fatal brain injury and 15 percent more likely to suffer a nonfatal brain injury than a helmeted motorcyclist. Motorcycle helmets are 37 percent effective at preventing fatality and save approximately 1500 lives each year.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the safest way to operate a motorcycle?
First, keep your motorcycle in good running order with regular maintenance and repair. Second, you need to be sure that you understand the risks of riding a motorcycle before you ever get on one. Be familiar with its operation, control, and braking. Ride within your abilities. If you are uncomfortable going beyond a certain speed, then don’t do it. Proper riding can only be achieved through practice. Finally, obey the rules of the road and be aware of your surroundings. A lot of drivers do not like motorcyclists and they engage in aggressive driving around you. Be aware of this and use extra caution. Don’t assume you can be seen by other drivers. Drive defensively.
For further information on the proper operation of a motorcycle, the Missouri Department of Revenue offers a very informative motorcycle operator manual that can be accessed online at https://dor.mo.gov/pdf/motoman.pdf.
Do helmets really make a difference?
According to the National Highway and Transportation Safety Administration, an unhelmeted motorcyclist is 40 percent more likely to suffer a fatal head injury and 15 percent more likely to suffer a non-fatal injury than a helmeted motorcyclist when involved in a crash. NHTSA estimates that motorcycle helmets reduce the likelihood of a crash fatality by 37 percent. A study conducted at the University of Southern California, which analyzed 3,600 traffic crash reports covering motorcycle crashes, concluded that wearing helmets was the single most important factor in surviving motorcycle crashes.
What should I look for when purchasing a helmet?
Keep in mind that all motorcycles sold in the United States are required to meet Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 218, which establishes the minimum level of protection a helmet must provide each helmet user. When purchasing a helmet, please be sure that the helmet complies with this regulation.
Is wearing a helmet required in Missouri?
If you are over the age of 26 and have valid health insurance in Missouri, you are not required to wear a helmet.
What should I do if I’m in a motorcycle accident?
Please see my section “What You Should Do If I’m Hurt in an Accident”.
Who can I sue if I am injured in a motorcycle accident?
Any one who contributes to causing a motor vehicle accident can be sued for damages. Missouri is a pure comparative fault state. This means that even if someone is 99% at fault, he or she can still recover 1% of his or her damages. Oftentimes, vehicles are owned or operated by businesses or used during the scope or course of employment. Under such circumstances, the owners of the vehicle can be pursued for damages via vicarious liability.
How much is my case worth?
Several factors affect the value of your personal injury claim. These factors include the nature and extent of your injuries; the amount of your medical bills, lost wages, property damage, and other financial losses; pain and suffering; and present and future disability. Even when those factors are considered, there can be significant variations in the value of a claim based on the amount of insurance available or the assets of the defendant, any comparative fault, and more. Unfortunately, there is no mathematical formula that computes the value of your case. However, when your damages become reasonably certain, Mr. Cox will discuss potential values with you.