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Common Causes of Delaware Motorcycle Accidents

Man riding motorcycle makes a right turn at a stop sign.

Riding a motorcycle offers a thrilling sense of freedom and adventure, but it also comes with significant risks. Across the United States, over 6,000 motorcyclists die in traffic collisions, often due to the negligent actions of vehicle drivers. Understanding the most common types of motorcycle accidents and knowing how to avoid them can make all the difference in ensuring everyone's safety on the road. May is National Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, which serves as an important reminder about how vulnerable bikers are when they're involved in a crash with another driver.

What are the most common types of motorcycle crashes?

Below, you'll find the most common causes of motorcycle accidents. Most of these accidents are linked to distracted driving, speeding, failure to yield, or simply disregarding motorcyclists on the road.

Left-turn motorcycle accidents

One of the most common and dangerous types of motorcycle crashes occurs when a vehicle makes a left turn in front of an oncoming motorcycle. These accidents typically happen at intersections when a car driver misjudges the speed of an approaching motorcycle or fails to see it altogether. The result is often a severe collision, with the motorcyclist bearing the brunt of the impact.

Prevention Tips:

  • Double-check: Always double-check for oncoming motorcycles before making a left turn. Due to their smaller size, motorcycles can be difficult to spot.
  • Use turn signals: Signal your intentions well in advance to alert motorcyclists of your intended turn.
  • Judge speed accurately: Take extra time to judge the speed and distance of oncoming motorcycles. If in doubt, let the motorcycle pass before turning.

Lane-switching motorcycle accidents

Another common scenario is when a vehicle changes lanes without noticing a motorcyclist in the adjacent lane. Motorcycles are smaller and can easily slip into a car's blind spot, making it important for vehicle drivers to always double-check for motorcyclists before merging or changing lanes.

Prevention Tips:

  • Check blind spots: Always check your blind spots by turning your head to ensure no motorcycles are in the adjacent lanes.
  • Use mirrors effectively: Use your mirrors in conjunction with blind spot checks to have a comprehensive view of the road.
  • Signal intentions: Use your turn signals before changing lanes to give motorcyclists time to react.

Head-on collisions

Head-on collisions are less common than other types of crashes, but they're often fatal for motorcyclists. These accidents usually occur on rural roads where vehicles travel at higher speeds and visibility may be limited.

Prevention Tips:

  • Stay in your lane: Always stay in your lane and avoid crossing the centerline, especially on curves and hills where visibility is restricted.
  • Be cautious on rural roads: Drive cautiously on rural roads, especially in poor weather or low visibility conditions.
  • Reduce speed: Reduce your speed on narrow or winding roads to increase reaction time.

Rear-end collisions

Being hit from behind is another risk for motorcyclists, particularly in stop-and-go traffic or at red lights and stop signs. A rear-end collision can easily throw a motorcyclist off their bike and result in serious and life-threatening injuries.

Prevention Tips:

  • Maintain a safe following distance: Keep a safe distance from motorcycles, allowing more time to react to sudden stops.
  • Pay attention to traffic flow: Stay alert to the flow of traffic and anticipate stops by watching for brake lights ahead.
  • Avoid distractions: Avoid using your phone or engaging in other distractions while driving, especially in heavy traffic.

Hurt in a Delaware motorcycle crash? We protect injured bikers' rights

If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident, the last thing you should worry about is fighting for the compensation you deserve. Insurance companies often stereotype motorcyclists as reckless, but the attorneys at Gill, Welsh, and Chamberlain, P.A. know that most riders are responsible and careful.

Our experienced motorcycle accident lawyers are dedicated to protecting your rights and ensuring you receive the compensation you're entitled to under Delaware law. With decades of experience, we will work tirelessly to build a strong case and ensure you're treated fairly. Contact us online or call our Georgetown law office today to schedule a free consultation. We are here to help.

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