Motorcyclists face unique hazards whenever they are on the road. Due to the smaller size, other drivers typically claim that they didn’t “see” the motorcycle when an accident occurs. In addition, motorcyclists are far more likely to suffer serious injury and even death in the event of an accident than other motorists. With May being dedicated to raising awareness of motorcycle safety, Billings motorcycle accident lawyer Jim Ragain reviews some information that can help keep motorcyclists safe and what to do if you are in an accident.
Staying Safe on Your Motorcycle
While most of this may seem like common sense, it may be helpful to revisit some suggestions for avoiding accidents while riding your motorcycle.
- Wear a helmet and safety gear. While Montana and Wyoming do not require riders over the age of 18 to wear helmets, a helmet can save your life. You should also consider wearing other riding gear such as gloves, a long-sleeve protective jacket, long pants, and closed-toe boots to minimize your risk of injury in the event of an accident.
- Keep up with maintenance and regularly inspect your bike. Mechanical failures can lead to an accident in the blink of an eye. Before every ride, you should make sure your tires are properly inflated and in good shape and that your brakes are functioning properly. In addition, make sure that your headlight, brake light, and turn signals are working.
- Keep an eye on the weather. Inclement weather can be very dangerous while riding. Rain, snow, and strong winds can cause you to lose control of the bike and lead to an accident.
- Be visible. High visibility and reflective gear make you more visible to other motorists. Ride close to the center line and turn your headlight on even in the daylight.
- Do not overload your bike. If you are planning a trip, be mindful that your motorcycle will handle differently under load. It may be more difficult to maneuver and require a greater stopping distance. Overloading your bike can make the handling unpredictable.
Even experienced motorcycle riders can overlook some of these things and find themselves in a dangerous situation. Unfortunately, there is no way to ensure that other drivers are paying attention and driving safely. If you are in an accident, you should contact a Billings motorcycle accident lawyer for help.
What to Do if You Are in an Accident
If you are in an accident caused by a negligent driver, you should do your best to remain calm. If you are able, you should be the name insurance information of the driver and the contact information for any witnesses. Contact the police and ask that everyone remain at the scene until they arrive. Of course, you should also seek immediate medical attention even if you are not sure if you are injured.
In the days that follow your accident, there are several important steps that you will need to take:
- You will need to contact the insurance company
- You will need to obtain statements from any witnesses
- You will need to document your injuries, damage to your bike, and any other losses
- You will need to get follow-up medical treatment
All of this can be overwhelming if you have been seriously injured. An experienced Billings motorcycle accident lawyer can help you with all of these things so that you can focus on your recovery.
Talk to a Billings Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Today
A motorcycle accident can leave you with staggering medical bills and your injuries may make it impossible to work or take care of your family. To discuss whether you are entitled to compensation, contact us today at 406-651-8888 to schedule a free consultation.