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Lake County motorcycle accident attorney, motor vehicle accidents, motorcycle accidents, sharing the road, motorcycle safetyWhen you drive, you have to share the road with a wide variety of other vehicles, and it is always good to remember that everyone has an equal right to safety on the road. This includes not just standard four-wheeled vehicles and large trucks and buses, but also motorcycles.

Motor vehicle accidents can be especially deadly for motorcyclists, since they do not have the protection of a large vehicle or safety features such as seat belts and airbags.

When you drive, it is important to practice good driving habits which will help protect not only your own safety, but the safety of everyone with whom you share the road. Unfortunately, many drivers do not drive as safely as they should around motorcycles, since their small size can make them harder to see.

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Illinois personal injury lawyer, Illinois wrongful death attorney, Illinois motorcycle accident lawyer,There are countless reasons for motorcycle accident crash and fatality statistics, and identifying fault can sometimes be extremely difficult. Fingers are pointed and blame is placed on one or more drivers, but no matter who causes an accident, all motorists are equally responsible for their own safety out on the highways. Drivers need to be familiar with their vehicles, how they operate, and actively practice safe driving techniques to maintain accountability on the roads.

Whether you are a new motorcycle owner or have been riding for some time now, it is important to know your bike and how to handle it on the open road. The more comfortable you are with your bike and how it rides, the better chance you have at operating it safely while remaining both vigilant and defensive.

Spend Time in Your Garage or on the Driveway

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Posted on in Motorcycle Accidents

Illinois personal injury lawyer, Illinois wrongful death attorney, Illinois car accident lawyer,It is no shock that there are more motorcycle fatalities and injuries per number of accidents than those experienced by drivers or passengers in motor vehicles. Because motorcycle riders lack an enclosed space, accidents are usually more severe. This is exacerbated by the fact that a significant number of motorcycles have high performance capacities, meaning that they can drive at high speeds — this is further exacerbated by the fact that many motorcyclists are using the bike for a joy ride, rather than for function. This can often mean that motorcyclists are more reckless.

Although there are not set comparative numbers, by some estimates that per mile traveled in 2013, there were 26 times the number of motorcycle deaths than fatalities in motor vehicles. While motorcycle deaths declined between the early 1980s and 1998, they have been steadily increasing in numbers since 1998. This could be because there are simply more motorcyclists on the road — but either way, motorcycle deaths made up nearly 15 percent of all roadway crashes in 2013 and were double the number of deaths in 1997.

Helmets are the single easiest way to avoid death if involved in a motorcycle accident. Most states have helmet laws — either requiring all motorcyclists to wear a helmet when driving, or a partial law, which limits to whom the law is applicable. Illinois is among the three states that does not have any helmet law at all. A bill introduced in 2011 would have required drivers under the age of 26 to use a helmet, but it did not pass. Even with a helmet, however, motorcycle accidents are still among the most deadly: 59 percent of motorcycle drivers who were fatally injured in a crash in 2013 were in fact wearing a helmet at the time of the accident.

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Illinois personal injury lawyer, Illinois car accident attorney, Illinois motorcycle accident lawyer, It is no secret that motorcycle accidents are among the most frequent and common severe vehicle accidents that occur on the nation’s highways. It has also been widely publicized in recent years that the number of serious motorcycle accidents continues to increase. This is due in part to the fact that there are more motorcycle drivers on the road than ever before. According to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration, the number of registered motorcycles in the country has increased from about 4 million in 1997 to approximately 7 million in 2006. The number of registered riders has steadily increased from 2002 to the present. The increase in registered riders alone accounts for a 61 percent increase in the number of riders involved in accidents. The number of fatalities rose from 2,028 to 4,654 in the same time period—a staggering increase of 129 percent.

The most dangerous type of impact is a front-end impact on a motorcycle — more than 40 percent of these types of accidents resulted in an incapacitating injury to the driver and nearly 70 percent of these were fatal. The most common type of motorcycle accident injury is one sustained to the lower extremities, primarily the legs. The second most common type of motorcycle injury is one to the upper extremities or the head. Helmet laws, requiring motorcycle drivers to wear head protection, are enacted on a state-by-state basis. Illinois is one of only three states (alongside Iowa and New Hampshire) to not have a mandatory helmet law.

According to the Center for Disease Control, this costs Illinois a significant amount of money every year, and likely contributes to the high motorcycle fatality numbers in the state. The CDC reports that in 2010, only four lives were saved by helmet use per 100,000 registered motorcycles. In neighboring Michigan, to contrast, 27 lives were saved per 100,000 registered motorcycles in 2010. Michigan enacted a partial helmet law in 2012.

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motorcycle fatalitiesThe rate of motorcycle fatalities has climbed in recent years in Illinois, even as the number of accidents involving motorcycles has decreased, according to the Insurance Journal. Illinois State Police told the Journal no one single contributing factor was the culprit, but experts “say the increase in fatalities comes as more people—some of whom may not have had proper training—a riding.” In the past 10 years, the number of registered motorcycles has increased more than 55 percent in the state.

One reason for the consistently high motorcyclist fatality rate in Illinois could have to do with the fact that Illinois is only one of three states that does not have a law that requires all motorcyclists to wear a helmet while riding. More than 75 percent of people who died in 2011 were not wearing helmets at the time of crash, according to the Insurance Journal. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), the first helmet laws were passed in 1967, when the federal government required states to pass such legislation for highway safety funds. All but three states (Illinois, Iowa, and New Hampshire) had complied by 1975. One year later, Congress unauthorized the federal government to enforce such laws; following this many “states began to weaken helmet laws to apply only to young or novice riders,” according to the GHSA.

There are many things in addition to wearing a helmet that a rider, especially a novice rider, can do to help reduce the risk of death. The first is to avoid alcohol entirely. The second is to be very aware of the other vehicles on the road. If you are hit by another vehicle, immediately move yourself (if possible) out of traffic to reduce the risk of second injury. According to Consumer Reports, novice riders can take Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) classes across the U.S., which will teach inexperienced riders important safety foundations, such as evasive emergency maneuvers.

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