Although motorcyclists have the same rights on the road as other vehicles and are protected by the same law, the larger vehicles using the road often fail to yield, resulting in severe motorcycle accidents.
If you or a loved one gets into a failure to yield accident involving more oversized vehicles, you have a right to compensation for your losses. At Pacific West Injury Law, our personal accident lawyers are committed to protecting the legal rights of motorcyclists. We have several years of experience securing maximum financial compensation for the failure of victims to yield accidents involving motorcycles.
How do Failure-to-Yield Motorcycle Accidents Occur?
Failure to yield motorcycle collisions can happen when a vehicle, truck, bus, or other driver fails to give right of way to an oncoming motorcyclist. The following are the typical causes of failure to yield motorcycle accidents:
- Failure to see the motorcyclist: Motorcyclists are in grave danger when passenger vehicles and commercial trucks make sudden left turns into oncoming traffic without seeing an oncoming biker. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reveals nearly 42% of all motorcycle crashes occur when cars turn left onto the motorcyclist’s right of way.
- Aggressive driver behaviors: Types of behaviors that amount to aggressive driving include driving at excessive speeds, assuming the right of way, speeding up as the light changes, and intentionally running a red light. The most common aggressive driving action that contributes to failure to yield the right of way is speeding.
- Driver distraction: It is not unusual for a failure to yield a motorcycle accident based on a driver’s distraction. Examples of driver distraction that can be fatal for a motorcyclist include using a cellphone to text or call while driving, changing music, and eating while driving, attending to small children or pets within the vehicle.
- Driver impairment: Another major cause of failure to yield accidents involving motorcyclists is driver impairment due to alcohol use, illegal drug use, or prescription drug use. When a driver lacks full control of the faculties due to impairment, they may fail to yield the road appropriately, causing a crash.
- Failure to check blind spots: In most cases, a motorist who fails to check their blind spots adequately may switch lanes only to crash into a biker who was in their blind spot. Motorcycles are typically smaller than other cars. Most drivers have not trained themselves to use reasonable care and exercise extra care when checking their blind spots before taking turns.
- Miscalculating the speed of motorcycles: Some drivers misjudge the speed of the oncoming motorcycles to make inappropriate turns that result in failure to yield accidents.
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Types of Damages in Failure-to-Yield Motorcycle Crashes
Motorcycle crashes caused by a driver’s failure to yield result in massive losses for the biker and their families. There are several types of compensatory damages to seek the harm you have suffered after getting into a failure to yield motorcycle accident. These include:
- Medical expenses: An injured biker may need surgery, extended medication and hospitalization, assistive devices, and ongoing rehabilitation. You can recover past and future medical bills that you incur due to your injuries in a personal injury case.
- Lost wages: Severe injuries will likely prohibit you from working, resulting in lost income. In some cases, a biker may be permanently rendered unable to work or able to go back to the same type of work they were doing before the accident.
- Pain and suffering: Pain and suffering refers to mental anguish suffered by a victim following a crash. Any mental anguish or physical pain you suffer following a failure-to-yield motorcycle accident can qualify as pain and suffering for settlement purposes.
- Punitive damages: Punitive damages are the damages awarded to punish the at-fault driver for their reckless behavior on the road that resulted in the accident. A jury or judge can award punitive damages in a case where the driver intentionally disregards the safety of others or gets intoxicated, thereby causing a failure to yield crash.
- Wrongful death: In the unfortunate event that a motorcycle accident results in the death of the biker or passenger, wrongful death compensation may be sought from all the negligent parties.
Who Is Liable for a Failure-to-Yield Accident?
In most failure to yield accidents, the driver who fails to yield the right of way is liable for the accident. The basic rules of the road in most states include yielding the right of way to other drivers, including bikers, in scenarios such as before making turns, when entering a freeway or whenever a yield sign is present. Drivers who violate this rule can be cited for negligence and held liable for injuries and other damages suffered by motorcyclists.
Get Help Today from a Pacific West Injury Law Attorney
If you or a loved one is injured in a failure to yield accident, you could have solid grounds for a successful personal injury lawsuit to compensate for your losses. At Pacific West Injury Law, our highly experienced motorcycle accident attorneys can help you formulate a solid legal strategy to recover appropriate damages. Contact us today for a free case review.