May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month in California, and even though it’s coming to a close it’s not too late to stress motorcycle safety. The operators of all vehicles on California’s roads are collectively responsible for everyone’s safety. Whether you drive a motorcycle, a car, an SUV, a big rig, or anything else with wheels and a motor, you should do your part to make the roads safer for everyone, not just motorcycles.
Bikers at High Risk
A few weeks back The Press-Enterprise published a lengthy piece on motorcycle safety and crash statistics in Southern California. The numbers aren’t pretty. Already through the first four months of 2017, eleven people had died in motorcycle crashes just in western Riverside County. Statewide last year, CHP estimates that 476 motorcyclists were killed and more than 14,000 injured in crashes.
While crash statistics consistently show that about half of all motorcycle crashes don’t involve another vehicle, the rest do. That means that others on the road—the drivers of cars, trucks, and other vehicles—cause about half of all fatal motorcycle crashes. But in some ways it doesn’t matter who causes a crash: Motorcyclists suffer injuries at five times the rate of all other drivers per vehicle mile travelled, and they’re killed on the road at a rate twenty-six times higher than that of other motorists.
Safety Month Hasn’t Been Entirely Safe
We always hope that campaigns like California’s Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month will have the intended effect and lead to improvements for everyone, but we often don’t see an immediate effect. By looking at the news coverage in Southern California, you might even think there’s been no effect at all.
Near the beginning of the month, a Palm Desert man who was later charged with DUI committed a hit-and-run crash on two motorcyclists, one of whom was moderately injured. In San Jacinto, a rider was injured when a car made a sudden left turn from a side street into the path of a motorcycle. (That is an all-too-common cause of motorcycle crashes: 42 percent of fatal crashes with another vehicle happened when the other vehicle took a left turn across a motorcyclist’s path.) Only last week, a woman was killed in San Jose when her motorcycle was struck by a driver who ran a red light.
Every incident like this is tragic, but if an awareness campaign like the one CHP sponsors can lead to fewer crashes, it will benefit every driver on our state’s roads. When drivers are more aware of motorcycles, it’s a safe bet that they’re more aware overall, and that’s good for everyone.
Orange County Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
When you’ve been the victim in a motorcycle crash, you need the help of an attorney who understands all the considerations in this type of accident. Dickson Kohan & Bablove, LLP has worked on many motorcycle accident cases. We understand the causes, the types of injuries, and the other concerns that are important in motorcycle crashes.
Give us a call to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case. Our number is 1-844-404-2400 or you can contact us online through the form below to have someone reach out to you at your convenience.