When you are riding a motorcycle you may feel carefree, but the reality is that in order to stay safe, there are many things you must be aware of.
Defensive driving is a must, and motorcyclists must follow the rules of the road just like any other driver. This means not speeding, not cutting other drivers off, tailgating, always signaling, and not weaving in and out of traffic. Any one of these actions can easily lead to a deadly accident. Some motorcyclists can be careless, but most motorcyclists who have been trained properly are attuned to notice everything and everyone on the road with them.
Drivers must be warned often to pay attention to motorcyclists and be mindful of them. The stakes are usually not as high for car drivers than they are for motorcyclists. A driver of a car or SUV might be far more concerned with watching out for semi trucks than for motorcycles because semis impose a far greater threat to the smaller vehicles than motorcycles do. But for motorcyclists, careless drivers are the biggest threat to staying safe and alive out on the roads. And driving safely is a responsibility shared by all drivers. Whether or not motorcyclists pose a threat to other drivers, drivers are legally responsible for being aware and diligent in driving defensively and in order to contribute to safe driving conditions.
One of the reasons why motorcyclists tend to be more aware of their surroundings than other drivers is that there are more distractions inside an automobile. Distractions like cell phones, eating while driving, or changing a CD, generally do not exist on a motorcycle. You must focus all your attention on the road and operating your motorcycle. The protection that drivers feel their cars give them can be misleading and actually cause them to become more complacent, which then creates conditions that make other drivers and riders less safe.
The shared love of motorcycles and awareness gives bikers a feeling of solidarity and brotherhood. Bikers are almost always willing to help each other out and lend a hand if needed. A great goal would be working towards cultivating this feeling of solidarity among all drivers so that anyone out on the road is concerned with the safety of others and puts that safety first. In the meantime, bikers must continue to drive defensively and make their own safety a priority. Depending on the vigilance of other drivers is not always an option, so wearing a helmet is a must. A helmet is one of the few protections that motorcyclists have.
In the event of an accident, it is important to remain calm. Motorcyclists stand an increased risk of sustaining serious injuries in the event of an accident. You may need immediate medical attention and therefore might be unable to wait for police, take pictures of the accident, and exchange contact information with witnesses, as would be advised following any accident. But medical attention is crucial and there are still steps you can take to protect your accident claim if you plan to pursue damages.
- Stay at the scene unless you need immediate medical treatment.
- Do not discuss the accident with the at-fault driver.
- Document your injuries and medical treatment.
- Obtain the police report.
- Contact a motorcycle accident attorney.
St. Louis Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
The steps that you take after an accident can either protect the integrity of your motorcycle accident claim, or hurt it. You should contact a motorcycle accident attorney as soon as possible so they can help you to pursue compensatory damages for the injuries and other damages you have suffered as a result of the accident.
If you have been involved in a car or motorcycle accident in St. Louis, contact The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. For over 15 years our law firm has been fighting to protect the rights of auto accident victims in Missouri and Illinois.
Call us today at (314) 361-4242 to schedule a free consultation.
St. Louis Motorcycle Accident Attorney Resources
photo credit: Visionstyler Press