Left Hand Turn Motorcycle Collisions

motorcycle accident-1Motorcycle riding provides the feeling of freedom for the rider, especially in the warmer climates and faster riding speeds of Riverside and San Bernardino roadways.  With the wind whipping past and the scenery going by many feel they have reached the zenith of freedom. This is a great feeling and one that is much more attractive to motorcyclists, than driving a passenger vehicle. That is, until there is an accident, which causes injury, damage to the bike and the misery, when it involves another vehicle.

But with great freedom also comes great risks. In this case, left hand turn motorcycle collisions are one of the most common and avoidable types of incidents that riders face. This occurs when vehicles are making a left hand turn in front of a motorcycle and basically cuts the cyclist off, without warning. Whether a crash happens on purpose or not, the result is usually a serious accident. These kinds of collisions are especially serious for the bike rider, since they are exposed and have very little protection. When a car or truck side-swipes the bike it is like striking a concrete wall at a high rate of speed.

Collisions

Approximately 42 percent of motorcycle accidents involving another vehicle are attributed to left-hand turn crashes. Collisions with other vehicles occur when:

  • The bike rider is traveling straight through an intersection.
  • While passing a vehicle.
  • When attempting to pass another vehicle.

The size of a motorcycle makes it difficult for other motorists to see in some situations. Driver awareness is one of the main factors in all types of motor vehicle accidents. There are many vehicle operators that do not focus on traffic around them. This is negligent behavior, which can also be referred to as driver distraction in some situations that cause serious and avoidable accidents.

Negligence

There are some occasions when motorcycle riders decide to pass another vehicle within the same lane they are riding, in some cases the driver may not expect this type of maneuver and the reaction of the driver can result in an accident. Generally the fault is on the driver of the motor vehicle, unless the motorcycle rider was reckless in their actions. When both parties are negligent, it can result in physical harm that is minor or severe. Accidents involving motorcycles in traffic accidents, the injuries can be so severe they are fatal and result in a wrongful death.

In any motorcycle collision, if the rider is speeding or maneuvering the motorcycle in an erratic or reckless way, the motorcyclist may be at fault in an accident. If a motorcyclist is found to be negligent or partially at fault in a collision, this can reduce the amount of compensation that may be recovered and in some states the motorcycle rider would be unable to recover any compensation.

Reducing Damage

When riding a motorcycle the rider needs to be defensive and always alert to the traffic around them. The rider needs to be prepared to react quickly, any time they are on the road with other vehicles. Collisions happen in a matter of seconds, being prepared to react may help avoid the accident, protecting you from being seriously harmed. When a left-turn collision occurs, the motorcyclist will be injured. How serious the injuries are may not only depend on how the accident occurs, but also the protective gear the rider is wearing.

Proper Left Hand Turns

While drivers and motorcyclists make left hand turns many times during their time on the roadway, the left hand turn can be extremely dangerous for the bike rider. There are some guidelines that when followed can make turning left safer and should be reviewed by both the motorcyclist and motor vehicle drivers.

  • Make certain when turning left you are in the correct lane to make the turn.
  • Always make certain to use the proper turn signal, whether at an intersection or not. If there is no intersection, then the rider or driver should begin slowing to make their turn approximately 75 to 100 feet before the turn.
  • Use caution at intersections and when turning left, make sure it is clear to do so, and if other drivers are impatient and honk, don’t let this be a factor in turning too soon.
  • Stay idle, until it is safe to make the turn, with no traffic coming toward you and you must yield to vehicles, bicyclists traveling in the opposite direction.
  • Prior to making the turn, ensure you look in both directions.
  • Do not rush to be a traffic signal, take the time to negotiate the turn properly and do not speed through it.
  • When making the turn stay on the right side of the line and in the center of the lane. Turn into the inner lane, rather than the furthest lane. Generally the furthest lane is for vehicles making right hand turns and you could cut another vehicle off or turn into a driver that is traveling straight.

If you have been involved in a left hand turn riding collision, the Inland Empire motorcycle accident lawyers at Ehline Law can certainly assist you in recovering compensation and damages, for medical expenses, lost wages, along with pain and suffering. To schedule a free consultation and have our legal experts evaluate your case to determine your legal options contact the law firm today toll-free at 888-400-9721.

Citations:

“Motorcycle Accident Cause Factors”HH Hurt.

“Motorcycle Left Hand Turn Accidents”Ehline Law Firm PC

“Why Are Left Hand Turn Accidents So Deadly” Price Benowitz LLP