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Warmer Weather Means More Motorcycle Accidents

Posted on in Motorcycle Accidents

Illinois personal injury lawyer, Illinois wrongful death attorney, Illinois motorcycle accident lawyer,In 2014, over 2,500 motorcyclists were injured and over 100 killed in motorcycle accidents. These injuries and fatalities accounted for nearly 14 percent of all fatal vehicle accidents, and four percent of crashes involving injuries across the state of Illinois. Just recently, a Naperville man was killed when he drove his motorcycle into the back of an SUV on I-55. While the number of motorcyclists killed decreased by over 22 percent from 2013 to 2014, the number of those injured decreased by less than one percent.

With warmer weather on the horizon, many bikers will pull their motorcycles out of storage to get out and enjoy the roads. The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) Division of Traffic Safety reported that 86 percent of fatal crashes involving motorcycles occur between May and September. In 2014, there were no fatal crashes in January or February, but the number increased every month from March to September.

Common Causes of Motorcycle Crashes

While warm weather does not cause accidents, it does mean that more riders than ever will be on the road, creating more opportunities for collisions, injuries, and fatalities. IDOT has compiled data showing that most accidents are caused by:

  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Thirty-seven percent of motorcycle drivers killed in collisions tested positive for alcohol. One hundred percent of those who tested positive for alcohol were male;
  • Operating a motorcycle in an erratic, reckless, or negligent manner;
  • Operating at erratic or suddenly changing speeds;
  • Failing to maintain lane position;
  • Inexperience of the motorcycle operator;
  • Improperly following other vehicles at close ranges or erratic speeds;
  • Passing without adequate distance or visibility of other vehicles; and
  • Failing to yield to other vehicles.

Safety Tips for Motorcyclists

The State of Illinois has implemented Start Seeing Motorcycles, a safety campaign aimed at increasing safety and awareness for motorcyclists. To reduce the risk of accidents, motorcyclists should:

  • Wear high-visibility clothing to increase drivers’ ability to see you;
  • Flash brake lights and use hand signals when slowing down or stopping;
  • Avoid driving in cars’ blind spots, and leave room for yourself to navigate out of close calls if necessary;
  • When passing, use appropriate signals in advance, and stay in designated lanes;
  • When following other cars, allow a minimum of two seconds between yourself and the other vehicle in clear weather; in poor weather, allow four or five seconds of following distance;
  • Check your motorcycle to ensure it is in safe riding condition before every ride; and
  • Do not operate your motorcycle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Other drivers are responsible for taking care to watch for motorcyclists and driving cautiously, but following these safety tips can reduce your risk of being involved in a collision with another vehicle.

Need More Information?

Even if you follow all of the proper procedure to reduce your risk of collisions as much as possible, you cannot control other drivers’ behavior. It is not uncommon for another driver to cause an accident with a motorcyclist by failing to see the motorcycle or following too closely.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident because of another driver’s negligence or reckless driving, contact the experienced Lake County injury attorneys at Salvi & Maher, L.L.C.. We have represented injured Illinois motorcyclists for decades, and we can provide the representation you need. We will work to get you the compensation you deserve from the negligent driver. Contact us at 847-662-3303 to schedule your free case consultation today.

Sources:

http://www.idot.illinois.gov/Assets/uploads/files/Transportation-System/Resources/Safety/Crash-Reports/crash-facts/2014%20CF.pdf

http://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/naperville-sun/crime/ct-nvs-naperville-fatal-motorcycle-crash-st-0417-20160415-story.html

http://investigations.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/04/24/17880171-warm-weather-helps-drive-surge-in-motorcycle-deaths

http://www.startseeingmotorcycles.org/Currentstats.pdf

http://www.startseeingmotorcycles.org/Safety_Tips.aspx
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