Why Do I Need an Attorney?
The experienced attorneys at our motorcycle accident law firm can investigate your driving incident to make a fair determination of the actual cause of the accident as well as any associated liability. Thanks to our years of experience, we know how to find the evidence we’ll need to represent you, and we know how to preserve the existing evidence. We also know how to assess your losses—not only the ones you’ve already experienced but those that the accident may affect in the future. You need a trial lawyer with experience to negotiate with aggressive insurance companies that don’t have your best interests at heart.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents in Colorado
If you’re an avid motorcyclist, it’s important to know the various common causes of motorcycle crashes in Colorado. When you understand the most common causes of an accident, you’re more likely to be able to prevent them. Understanding the cause of your accident will also help your attorney build a good case. We’ve compiled a list for you, along with some things you can do to avoid these types of accidents:
Head-on Collisions with Other Vehicles
Nearly four out of five two-vehicle motorcycle accidents are due to the motorcycle being struck by another vehicle from the front. These types of accidents can be particularly deadly for bikers who do not have the same level of protection against collisions as car and truck drivers do. These accidents occur under a variety of different circumstances, including drivers running red lights, failing to yield the right of way, or turning left into a moving motorcycle.
Defects in the Road
While a patch of gravel or a minor pothole might be trivial to a passenger vehicle, these relatively small defects can result in catastrophic results for a motorcyclist. It’s generally up to the jurisdiction in which you are riding to prevent these dangerous defects, which also include things like cracks, uneven pavement, and dips. Malfunctioning traffic lights can also be at fault. Premises liability claims are often possible in the event of an accident caused by a roadway defect.
Single vehicle accidents are often, as noted above, caused by dangerous roadways. Defective motorcycle parts may also cause some. Sadly, however, the negligence of the cyclist can also be a contributing factor. Avoid driving after drinking—for example, over 1/4th of motorcycle operators that died due to an accident in 2016 had excessive blood alcohol limits. Don’t speed, and always follow the rules of the road.
Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries
We understand just how serious the consequences of a motorcycle accident can be for our clients. There are many types of damages and losses you can pursue after an accident, including compensation for any injuries you’ve sustained. These injuries may result in current costs, like medical bills or lost wages from work. They can also be part of a calculation that includes losses in the future, like the loss of future earnings. You need an experienced personal injury attorney to help you navigate this part of the law.
Some of the life-changing injuries you might experience if you were in a motorcycle accident include:
Traumatic Brain Injury
These are some of the most severe injuries that one might suffer due to a severe crash. Traumatic brain injuries can have life long consequences, like memory changes, mood alteration, fatigue, chronic pain, loss of balance, dizziness, and more. When not adequately treated, traumatic brain injuries can be deadly.
Spinal Cord Injury
The victim of a spinal cord injury may require more than a quarter of a million dollars to manage their treatment and other expenses in the very first year following their accident. Many require long-term health care and assistance with even basic tasks. Because of the many types of spinal cord injury, symptoms cover a wide range of possibilities, including nerve pain, breathing difficulties, or even paralysis.
When a motorcyclist strikes the pavement, they often slide across it. In some cases, this can damage multiple layers of their skin. These injuries may not seem dangerous initially, or the damage may be immediately apparent. In either case, it is often necessary for victims of road rash to obtain reconstructive surgery and skin grafts.
If damage to one or more of the cyclist’s limbs is severe enough, it may require amputation. Amputation is costly both in the short- and long-term. Expensive surgeries, prosthetics, and therapies are often required, with amputees needing to adapt to doing basic tasks like walking or writing.
Denver & Colorado Motorcycle Accident Statistics
Colorado is seeing rising numbers of motorcycle deaths. In response, the Colorado Department of Transportation is launching a new motorcycle safety campaign, with the aim of encouraging both new and veteran motorcyclists to join the Colorado Motorcycle Operator Safety Training Program. This campaign, known as Ride Wise, will set forth such positive messages as “live free, die old.”
It should come as no surprise that this has become a priority for the department, with statistics like these to draw from:
- The 106 deaths from motorcycle accidents in 2015 showed an increase of almost 12 percent from the previous year, and 20 percent higher than the number of recorded deaths in 2013.
- Nearly 80 percent of the deaths in 2015 were riders between 16 and 55 years of age
- 94 percent of the deaths from motorcycle accidents were men
- 40 percent of the accidents occurred in three counties: Denver, El Paso, and Jefferson
Can I still File a Suit if I was Partly to Blame for my Motorcycle Accident Injury?
Sometimes motorcyclists believe that if they contributed to the accident themselves, they aren’t entitled to compensation for their injuries. On the contrary, Colorado’s doctrine of comparative negligence means you may very well be entitled to compensation, even if you were partly at fault. The only time you are not able to receive compensation is if you were primarily at fault. As long as your fault is calculated to be less than 50 percent, you may be able to receive at least partial compensation for your injuries. For example, if it is decided that you were 15 percent at fault, you’re still entitled to 85 percent of the calculated compensation.