Wilmington Motorcycle Accident Attorneys
Accidents involving motorcycles can have severe repercussions. There are an estimated 8.4 million motorcycles in use throughout the U.S. Over 4,900 people died in motorcycle accidents in 2015, an increase of over 8% from slightly over 4,500 deaths in 2014. In addition, roughly 88,000 motorcyclists were injured last year.
Unfortunately, most accidents are the result of another driver’s negligence. In fact, motorcycle riders are roughly 27 times more likely to be killed in a crash than those in a passenger car on a per-vehicle mile basis.
With the help of a lawyer you may be able to determine negligence.
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Negligence is defined as a failure to act as a reasonable person would have under comparable circumstances. The individual(s) who are determined to be negligent are referred to as being "at-fault." Often an adjuster from an insurance organization may review or investigate an accident to determine fault. North Carolina is one of the few remaining states that subscribes to contributory negligence law, meaning that if a driver has even a small (partial) degree of fault in an accident, he or she is barred from recovery of damages in most cases. Many states employ a comparative negligence model where varying degrees of fault are assigned among the parties and correlate to the amount of total damages that someone may be eligible to recover. In situations of greatly contested assessments of negligence, a court of law may need to resolve the dispute.
In North Carolina you must have a motorcycle endorsement as a part of your license, and must have vehicle insurance specifically for your usage of a motorcycle. The minimum required amount of liability insurance coverage is $30,000 per person/$60,000 per accident designed to cover those injured or killed when you are at-fault. An additional $25,000 is required to cover property damage that you may be responsible for. Motorcycle insurance may include collision coverage for repair or replacement of your vehicle, and comprehensive coverage that covers incidents like theft or hail damage. Many people will also elect to add a specific medical payment insurance product and/or coverage for protection if they are involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist.
- Wearing safe gear: North Carolina requires that motorcycle riders wear approved helmets. Studies show a reduction in head- and neck-related injuries when riders are wearing a helmet at that time of an accident. Eye and facial protection should be worn and permit proper airflow and be free and clear of any visual obstructions. The body should be fully covered with long sleeves, pants, gloves, and sturdy footwear.
- Familiarize yourself when riding a different bike: If you obtain a new bike or borrow another’s bike, you should practice using the controls and properly maneuvering until you are comfortable with the variations.
- Make yourself visible: Your headlight should always be on and your clothing should be bright so that others will notice you. The majority of motorcycle accidents result from another driver’s failure to see a motorcyclist. Confirm that turn signals, brake lights and such are functional prior to riding.
- Remain conscious of surface conditions: Exercise caution when traveling over uneven or cracked surfaces. Recognize how you maneuver and use both front and rear brakes when surfaces are either wet or contain gravel.
- Limit alcohol consumption: Riding a motorcycle under the influence of alcohol is one of the leading reasons for accidents, injuries, and fatalities. If you plan on drinking, make other transportation arrangements.
At Rhine Law Firm, P.C., we handle serious motorcycle accidents on behalf of the victim. If you’ve been injured or have any questions about an accident, call our Wilmington traffic accident lawyers at (866) 772-9960.
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Every case is different. Amount of recovery is based on the facts and circumstances of each case. Prior outcomes do not guarantee any future results.
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