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For motorcycle riders, their vehicle is not just a means of transportation, but a lifestyle. They enjoy the freedom of exploring the scenic routes across Texas highways. They are passionate about caring for their motorcycles. Unfortunately, they are also more vulnerable than other road users when they are hit by another vehicle. If you or a loved one suffered injuries as a result of such a collision, an experienced Houston motorcycle accident lawyer at Calhoun Meredith can analyze your case and give you reliable legal advice.

We know that motorcycle accidents can have devastating consequences for victims: from broken bones to traumatic brain injury, motorcycle accident victims can spend months in hospital and rehabilitation without fully recovering. We also know that their families are struggling to pay for their medical care and other expenses while losing a source of income. For this reason, a motorcycle accident attorney at our firm will fight to win the maximum compensation you deserve from the negligent driver and their insurance company.

Statistical Data on Motorcycle Crashes in Texas

According to Statista, there are 328,300 motorcycles registered in Texas. Our state is the 7th on the list of states with most motorcycle owners across the US. There is no surprise, as our state has nearly 700 miles of popular routes for motorcycle riders, rated for the beauty of their scenery. However, this also means that there are many motorcyclists on public roads at any given moment of the day or night. And many of them fall victim to severe or even fatal motorcycle accidents.

Combined statistical data collected by the Texas Department of Transportation and the Look Learn Live motorcycle safety and awareness campaign indicate that the number of motorcycle accident injuries resulting in fatalities is constantly increasing:

  • 408 on 2019
  • 473 in 2020
  • 521 in 2021

Also, 1,708 motorcyclists suffered severe injuries in crashes in 2019, and 1,753 motorcycle riders were injured in collisions in 2020. These are worrisome trends, making Texas one of the most dangerous US states for motorcycle passengers and riders.

The Most Common Causes of Motorcycle Accident Injuries in Texas

Motorcycle injuries, especially catastrophic ones, are in many cases the result of not wearing a motorcycle helmet. In Texas, the helmet is mandatory for all drivers under 21 years old. If you are over 21 and completed a motorcycle education course successfully, you benefit from the helmet exemption rule. However, in order to avoid the most severe injuries or even death in a motorcycle collision, you and your passengers should always wear compliant and properly fitting motorcycle helmets and protective gear when riding.

In most cases, fatal crashes occur for the following reasons, according to Look Learn Live campaign:

When the negligent party was the motorcycle rider, the causes of the accidents were:

  • 17% failure to control speed
  • 9% riding at unsafe speeds
  • 7% animal presence on the road (more frequently on rural roads)
  • 6% distracted driving
  • 5% changing lanes when unsafe

Lane splitting is another factor that leads to motorcycle accidents resulting in severe or catastrophic injuries. Although Texas traffic laws prohibit lane splitting, many riders are still doing it in an attempt to overtake slower vehicles. However, this driving style exposes the motorcyclists and their passengers to an accident from both sides of their vehicle.

The negligent actions of car drivers that lead to a motor vehicle accident involving a motorbike are:

  • 19% failed to control speed (inexperienced riders are more prone to committing this error)
  • 12% distracted driver
  • 5% changed lane when unsafe
  • 5% failed to give right of way for turning left

However, in our experience as motorcycle accident injury lawyers, we know that motorcycle deaths and life-changing injuries can also be caused by:

  • drunk driving
  • aggressive drivers
  • reckless driving
  • drowsy drivers (especially in the case of collisions involving commercial vehicles such as 18-wheelers)

Other factors which may lead to a severe or fatal accident are inclement weather (snow or rainy conditions) and the presence of potholes or road work debris on the road surface.

How Serious Are Motorcycle Accident Injuries in Texas?

Any Houston motorcycle accident lawyer knows that motorcycle wrecks are among the most horrific traffic accidents. The riders have no protection from the impact of a larger vehicle. Some suffer fatal injuries on the spot, while others must go through complex surgeries and medical treatments. While road rash and fractured bones are the most common injuries associated with a motorcycle crash, many victims of motorcycle accidents suffer:

  • spine injuries
  • neck injuries
  • head injuries, including skull fractures and brain damage
  • internal bleeding
  • internal organ damage
  • extensive facial fractures and eye injuries

All these injuries require extensive hospitalization, resulting in very high medical bills. This is why motorcycle accident victims tend to hire a personal injury attorney to win the fair compensation they deserve from the at-fault driver and avoid getting into debt as they struggle to recover from their injuries.

Types of Compensation You Can Include in Motorcycle Accident Claims

Not only medical, but also financial recovery is difficult for motorbike accident victims. Experienced attorneys know that accident injury claims can include two types of damages: economic damages and non-economic damages.

Let us discuss them in more detail:

What Is Included in Economic Damages?

A Houston motorcycle accident lawyer will seek all the eligible losses and expenses you incurred as a direct consequence of the crash and include them in your legal claim. These damages include, among others:

  • hospital bills
  • medical care expenses
  • prescription medication, physical therapy costs
  • property damage (cost to repair or replace motorcycle wrecks)
  • lost wages
  • loss of earning capacity
  • costs with assistive devices, life care services, and home modifications

Non-Economic Damages - Offering Compensation for Pain and Suffering

Motor vehicle collisions do not result only in bodily injury and physical pain (including chronic pain), but also in mental pain. Many accident victims suffer from mental anguish and recurring nightmares after their crash. They experience a reduced quality of life as a result of permanent injuries or disability. They may also experience loss of consortium (the inability to have intimate relations with their partner or spouse).

All these visible and invisible injuries deserve fair compensation, and an experienced Houston motorcycle accident lawyer will determine an adequate amount and include it in your claim.

What About Punitive Damages?

When you file a personal injury lawsuit, you may be awarded punitive damages, or exemplary damages at the end of the trial. This type of compensation is actually a supplementary form of punishment for the at-fault parties that acted with gross negligence or malicious intent in causing your accident.

This goes beyond the breach of duty of care, and the plaintiff must demonstrate that the responsible driver was acting in a manner that exceeds simple negligence (drunk driver who is speeding, driving with a suspended license, etc.).

What to Do After a Motorcycle Accident

An experienced Houston motorcycle accident lawyer knows that the victim's actions or omissions can negatively influence their legal claim. Texas is an at-fault state for personal injury cases, and it uses the comparative negligence principle. This means that an accident victim must not be more than 50 percent at fault for their crash.

An insurance adjuster representing the at-fault driver's insurance company will look for any single aspect which may give them a reason to deny your claim. Thus, here is what you need to do in order to maximize your chances of winning fair compensation:

1. Call 9-1-1 and Remain at the Accident Scene

You must report the accident to the police and ask for an ambulance. You may not feel seriously injured, but nerve damage and internal bleeding may show symptoms hours or even days later. Unless you have catastrophic injuries and must be taken to the hospital at once, you should remain at the accident scene until the law enforcement team arrives to investigate the crash and prepare the accident report.

Give a brief and truthful statement, but do not assign fault to the other driver or admit it. Also, do not speculate on the possible causes of the accident.

2. Take Photos and Videos

While waiting for the police and ambulance, use your mobile phone to take photos and videos of the crash scene. Focus on:

  • your injuries
  • the damage done to your motorcycle
  • the position of both vehicles
  • poor road conditions (ice sheet, potholes, debris)
  • skid marks

At the same time, look for CCTV cameras and eyewitnesses who can support your version of the events. All these will be extremely useful for the Houston motorcycle accident lawyer representing you in claim negotiations with the insurance company.

3. Do Not Negotiate Your Settlement on Your Own

Insurance adjusters usually contact accident victims in the hospital and offer to settle the case quickly. You can be sure that you are not getting a fair deal, so do not accept any such deal. Next, they will try to seek ways to dissuade you from filing a claim, which includes stating that you were more than 50 percent responsible for the accident.

You should not believe any such statements. Also, you should refrain from making any statements that may incriminate you. Give a very brief description of the accident and inform the adjuster that your Houston motorcycle accident lawyer will contact them shortly to discuss your claim.

4. Hire an Experienced Houston Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

At Calhoun Meredith, you will find a team of dedicated and experienced motorcycle accident lawyers who rely on their knowledge of the law and on innovative solutions to win their clients' cases. We are by your side throughout the entire claims process. We give you all the necessary guidance, including the need to file a motorcycle accident lawsuit if the insurance company refuses to cooperate with us.

We are here to help you find justice and fair compensation for your losses, pain and suffering, so schedule a free case review with us as soon as possible: 855-664-0273!

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