Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents in Massachusetts


Riding a motorcycle is inherently dangerous. A bike’s small size and lack of enclosure make motorcyclists more vulnerable to injury than other motorists. In fact, motorcycle riders are over 26 times more likely to be killed in a crash than car and truck drivers. However, the risks can be minimized significantly by taking proper precautions when you ride. You can also lessen your chance of having an accident by performing regular maintenance on your bike.

Below is a list of common causes of motorcycle accidents and how to avoid them. By following safe riding practices, you will greatly reduce your risk of serious injury or death.

The Most Common Motorcycle Accident Causes and How to Avoid Them

Cars turning left: Collisions with cars making left-hand turns account for 42 percent of all motorcycle accidents. Always provide ample distance between you and the car in front of you, and use extra caution when approaching intersections.

Road hazards and dangerous weather conditions: Construction debris, potholes, uneven lanes, and loose gravel all present serious risks to motorcycle riders. Do your best to avoid these road hazards. Also avoid riding in adverse weather conditions, such as heavy rainfall, ice, and snow.

Excessive speed: Nearly half of all motorcycle accidents involve speeding. Excessive speed is dangerous for all motorists, but it’s especially risky for motorcyclists who lack the protection of an enclosed vehicle.

Lane splitting: This occurs when a motorcyclist rides between two lanes of traffic, usually in an attempt to get ahead of congested traffic. Different states have different stances on lane splitting and whether it is permissible in heavy traffic.

DUI: Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol puts everyone on the road at risk. It’s never a good idea to drive while intoxicated, but it’s even more dangerous for motorcyclists. Riding requires balance and focus, both of which are severely distorted by drugs and alcohol. Unfortunately, alcohol use is higher among motorcyclists than any other motorists.

In addition to the above safety tips, wearing a helmet can reduce your risk of death by 69 percent and your risk of brain injury by 42 percent. Massachusetts has the universal helmet law which requires all riders to wear a helmet at all times. Only 19 other states and the District of Columbia share this law.

Altman & Altman, LLP – Motorcycle Accident Attorneys

Although a bias toward motorcyclists has existed since motorcycles were first on the road, the majority of collisions with other motorists are not the rider’s fault. As a motorcycle rider, it is imperative that you always drive defensively. A bike’s small size makes it easy to “disappear” in the blind spots of other vehicles, and distracted drivers (texting and talking on cell phones) may not see you.

If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, property damage, pain and suffering, and lost wages. The MA Law Firm of Altman & Altman has been protecting the rights of MA clients for nearly 50 years. We understand the complexities surrounding motorcycle accident cases, and we have the experience and knowledge to get you the compensation you deserve. Our personal injury legal team will be with you every step of the way, ensuring that you understand your rights and options, and advocating on your behalf.  Contact the Greater Boston Law Firm of Altman & Altman LLP for a free consultation about your case.

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