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Articles Posted in Motorcycle Accidents

According to new statistics from the Centers for Disease Control, Arkansas is the third most dangerous state for driving. The average annual motor vehicle-related death rate was highest in Mississippi (31.9 per 100,000 population), followed by Wyoming (27.7), Arkansas (25.6), Montana (25.6), and Alabama (25.1). The study also found that men are twice as likely to be killed in an auto accident than women. According to the Community Guide of the Centers for Disease Control, motor vehicle related injuries kill more children and young adults than any other single cause in the United States and are the leading cause of death from injury for people of all ages.

The CDC claims proper use of lap and shoulder belts can reduce the chance of death in a traffic accident by 45 percent, and the likelihood of serious injury by 50 percent. In my practice, I have seen numerous times when a seat-belt saved a life. I have also reviewed cases where seat-belt and airbag malfunctions proved catastrophic. Car accident injuries continue to be a serious problem in Arkansas. Although seat-belt use cannot fully protect against injury, it is an important tool that we should all use. Please wear your seat-belt and if you would like to speak with an attorney about a recent car accident, please contact a car accident attorney today to guarantee your rights are protected.

Arkansas is the only state without a trauma center to deal with people who suffer a personal injury. Currently, the Arkansas Legislature is debating a plan to institute a trauma system. Unfortunately, a similar plan was defeated in 2007. Hopefully, this will not happen again.

According to government statistics, 15,000 people are hospitalized with injuries in Arkansas. Of those, 2,000 people die from their personal injuries and 6,000 suffer permanent disabilities each year. Arkansas has the third highest death rate in the country from motor vehicle accidents. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are 25 deaths per 100,00 people annually in the state compared to a national average of 15.2 per 100,000.

It is time that the Arkansas Legislature act and develop a trauma system to help people who suffer a personal injury in Arkansas. State health officials state publicly that a trauma system would prevent an estimated 2,000 disabilities and save 200-600 lives of Arkansans who don’t get appropriate care fast enough.

How to get medical bills paid is a common question after suffering a motorcycle accident in Arkansas. Luckily, there are several ways to get them paid. First, many people have health insurance that will cover accident related medical treatment. This is the best option for most people. The second way to get medical bills paid is through the insurance company of the person responsible for the accident. Many people do not know that Arkansas Law allows an injured motorcyclist, pedestrian, or bicyclist to get their medical bills paid by the No Fault or PIP insurance policy of the negligent driver. The same law allows the injured person to recover income disability benefits to cover lost income.

I recently had an insurance company adjuster not know that this law existed in Arkansas. However, after showing the adjuster the code section, I was able to get my client the necessary medical treatment for his injuries from a motorcycle accident. If you or a member of your family is involved in a motorcycle or bicycle accident, please contact me at 501-374-4440. Let me explain your rights under Arkansas Law.

An Arkansas jury awarded $1 million in damages to the victim of a motorcycle accident who lost part of his leg. The Plaintiff claimed damages for being hit by a car that pulled out in front of him. As more and more people are riding motorcycles and motor scooters on Arkansas roads and highways due to high gas prices, serious personal injuries from motorcycle accidents are happening more often.

A recent report by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that the number of people killed in traffic accidents decreased 3.9% in 2007. However, motorcyclist fatalities increased for the tenth consecutive year, rising 6.6% in 2007 to 5,154, the highest number since the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration began recording fatality crash data in 1975. Motorcyclists accounted for 13% of all traffic fatalities in 2007. Further, the number of motorcyclists injured in traffic accidents increased by an even greater amount. Approximately 103,000 motorcyclists were injured in traffic accidents in 2007, an increase of 17%.

There are many opinions regarding why this increase is occurring. From my experience, other drives do not pay attention to motorcycles and do not follow the Rules of the Road when encountering a motorcycle. The NHTSA has adopted the following model Share the Road recommendations that it hopes will help educate drivers of motor vehicles on the importance of sharing the roads safely with motorcyclists.

* Motorcycles are vehicles with the same rights and privileges as any vehicle on the roadway.

* Allow the motorcyclist a full lane width. Although it may seem as though there is enough room in the traffic lane for an automobile and a motorcycle, remember the motorcycle needs the room to maneuver safely. Do not share the lane.

* Approximately one-half of all motorcycle crashes involve another motor vehicle. Nearly 40 percent were caused by the other vehicle turning left in front of the motorcyclist.

* Motorcycles are small and may be difficult to see. Motorcycles have a much smaller profile than vehicles, which can make it more difficult to judge the speed and distance of an approaching motorcycle.

* Always signal your intentions before changing lanes or merging with traffic. This allows the motorcyclist to anticipate traffic flow and find a safe lane position.

* Remember that motorcyclists are often hidden in a vehicle’s blind spot or missed in a quick look due to their smaller size. Always make a visual check for motorcycles by checking mirrors and blind spots before entering or leaving a lane of traffic and at intersections.

* Don’t be fooled by a flashing turn signal on a motorcycle – motorcycle signals usually are not self-cancelling and riders sometimes forget to turn them off. Wait to be sure the motorcycle is going to turn before you proceed.

* Remember that road conditions which are minor annoyances to you pose major hazards to motorcyclists. Motorcyclists may change speed or adjust their position within a lane suddenly in reaction to road and traffic conditions such as potholes, gravel, wet or slippery surfaces, pavement seams, railroad crossings, and grooved pavement.

* Allow more following distance, three or four seconds, following a motorcycle so the motorcyclist has enough time to maneuver or stop in an emergency. In dry conditions motorcycles can stop more quickly than cars.

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