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Aminpour & Associates is a San Diego motorcycle accident law firm.
The most important life saver in a motorcycle accident is the helmet. It protects the head and face from fatal impacts. And it’s not just for high speed collision head protection. A rider can die even at a standstill if he hits his head the wrong way. Think of the beautiful late Natasha Richardson who, while skiing on a beginner’s slope, fell and hit her head. She felt a little dazed but declined hospitalization. It turned out that an artery in her brain had been damaged and she died of massive internal bleeding within a few hours. There are a number of cases where motorcyclists and even bicyclists suffer what appear to be minor injuries to the head and end up dead because serious head injuries can seem very innocuous at first. The bicycle helmet law was enacted for this very reason. Most deaths are caused by a head injury, and there is only one way to help avoid these while riding a motorcycle. All serious injuries are greatly reduced both in severity and in frequency by the simple act of putting on a helmet. In fact, more than half of motorcycle fatalities in 2003 were un-helmeted at the time of the accident. There are several different types of helmets, including full-face helmets, ľ helmets and half helmets. Full coverage is the best option because it affords protection for the entire head and face, instead of just a part of the head.
Even though wearing a helmet is the best advice for staying alive, there are other tips that can help. Almost half of motorcycle accident fatalities involve some sort of alcohol. Whether or not a rider is past the legal limit, motorcycles require a lot of skill and attention to operate safely. Any amount of alcohol can impair judgment enough to be dangerous; studies by the National Traffic Safety Board have shown that even a Blood Alcohol Level .01 or less can impair one’s judgment when driving.
Another key element to motorcycle safety is experience. This encompasses many different elements. The first and most important is the amount of time spent on the bike. The more riding time that a motorcyclist has under the belt, the better he or she will understand the different perils of the road and how to avoid them. Exercising sound judgment based on self-responsibility is another key element to understand. Realizing that owning a motorcycle makes it even more important to appreciate and obey traffic laws is essential for the rider to understand. By simply following traffic laws which are meant for the public good and the rider’s safety helps take much of the risk out of riding a motorcycle.
As mentioned in a previous section, the main causes of accidents are other motorists and the rider’s environment. Vigilance is the key to safety here. The old adage about being a defensive driver is especially true for the motorcyclist. A rider should constantly monitor their surroundings. When near other vehicles, a motorcyclist should assume that other drivers cannot see them and ride accordingly. The rider should also analyze all other conditions with the mindset that a dangerous obstacle is just around every corner. Understanding and remembering all of these tips can go a long way in keeping any rider’s bike and life intact.
When ridden safely, motorcycles are a great option for transportation. They are fun, fast and fuel-efficient. They offer privileges of riding in carpool and high vehicle efficiency lanes. The key to making sure any rider’s experience stays enjoyable is to respect the road and the rules. Being vigilant and wearing the right equipment will go a long way in helping prevent the bumps and bruises or worse that accompany any accident. So stay sharp and be safe and you and your motorcycle will have many more miles ahead to feel the pavement underneath roll on by.