Collisions between cars and motorcycles have been prevalent in Iowa. According to a 2019 report by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, approximately 313 fatal crashes and more than 336 deaths.
During the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, car and motorcycle-related deaths were around 337. This 2021, it is over 184 already, even though we are only in the third quarter of the year. The fatalities are still immense.
But what is the most common type of collision between cars and motorcycles in Iowa? What are you going to do after a vehicle accident? Why should you hire the best accident lawyers? You will know them all in this simple yet comprehensive guide. Without further ado, let’s begin!
Common Causes of Car and Motorcycle Crashes
Why are car and motorcycle crashes a common problem in Iowa and even other parts of the US? Below are some common causes. Take a close look at the following:
Driver/motorcyclist negligence is always the common cause of accidents involving a motorcycle and car in Iowa.
But what makes a motorcycle rider or driver negligent? Speeding, swerving, changing a lane, or sudden braking can charge you with reckless driving. This is especially true when you cause damages, serious injury, death, or other fatalities.
Since distracted driving has been rampant, Iowa has implemented a strict law. If once proven guilty, expect imprisonment that lasts up to 30 days. You will also settle a fine ranging from $65 to $625.
So, before driving, be sure your vehicle is always in perfect condition. Also, avoid using your phone even if you receive an important text message from your superior.
Failure to Give the Right of Way
Another common type of crash between cars and motorcycles happens when drivers or motorcyclists fail to yield the right of way.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), an intersection is one of the most dangerous and fatal places for motorcycle riders and car drivers.
Usually, cars that turn left at an intersection cannot yield the right of way because they do not see another vehicle coming.
That’s why the risk for these vehicles to crash is high, leading to catastrophic results.
When driving, your safety and other’s security/comfort should be your primary goals. Stop at any crosswalk or limit line when the need arises. Yield to every approaching vehicle on the street. Then, cross when it is already safe.
Always think ahead when you are on the road. Any simple mistake can cause something dangerous and serious.
A report by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) revealed that over 840,000 blind spot accidents took place in the US every year, which resulted in 300 fatalities.
This is where rearview and side mirrors can be a lifesaver, literally. The rearview mirrors, for example, allows drivers to see what’s in the back of the vehicles and help riders calculate the distance between their cars and the other, minimizing the risk of collisions.
Side mirrors, on the contrary, enable drivers to see what’s outside their cars on both sides.
Unfortunately, there are other blind spots that side and rearview mirrors cannot access, making lane changes dangerous.
When changing a lane, warn other riders so they have enough time to prepare and react. Adjusting the mirrors is also helpful.
After a long shift in the office without a quality night’s sleep, losing focus while driving or riding your car is not surprising.
But that is not a good excuse, particularly when you cause collisions and fatal/serious injuries to a group of motorcyclists. So, do not be shocked when another driver files a lawsuit against you since it is your fault.
When you feel a bit drowsy, ask help from a friend to drive you home, and you can be the passenger. You may feel embarrassed at first. But your safety is what matters the most, remember.
Experts at the National Sleep Foundation also said that driving while dizzy can impair your reaction time and judgment.
Therefore, it is better not to drive. Plus, take time to rest, even if you have a pile of paperwork to finish and deadlines to meet. Your health should always be on top of your priority.
Lack of Perception
You are sure the car or any vehicles you drive are a few meters away from you.
But why did you crash after all?
You are probably suffering from a lack of depth perception, which could happen to any rider out there. So, you are not alone.
But do not relax when you have been involved or encountered a dangerous situation on the road. It is time to have your eyes checked.
Maybe you are suffering from strabismus, amblyopia, trauma to one eye, or blurry vision. But it is recommended to grab a free consultation from your physician to avoid any guessing game.
Depending on the result, you may be prescribed to wear any corrective lenses. That’s why prepare your pocket, as this treatment may be costly.
Driving Under the Influence of Illicit Substances and Alcohol
Driving or riding under the influence of alcohol is another cause of crashes among vehicles.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, around 10,497 Americans died because of alcohol-related driving crashes in 2016 alone. Out of that number, more than 1,233 deaths are reported to be children who are 0 to 14 years of age.
For that reason, approximately 1 million drivers were put behind bars for driving under the influence of narcotics and alcohol.
The penalties for first offenders include imprisonment and hefty fines. Imprisonment can last up to a year. The fines, on the other hand, range from $625 to $1,250. The motorcyclists’ license may also be revoked to 180 days to 1 year, particularly when the driver refused chemical testing.
Other legal problems may arise for 2nd and 3rd offenders. You may contact a specialized and experienced auto accident lawyer for more information and free consultation.
Making Left-Hand Turns
The risks of motorcycle accidents are higher when drivers are turning left. Over 42% of accidents involving different vehicles are reported. Typically, the turning car strikes the motorcycle when going straight through an intersection or overtaking another car.
While these accidents may also happen to two cars, they are common in a motorcycle as they are smaller, making it hard to see for the drivers.
Who is at fault, though? The car that hits another vehicle while turning left is usually found at fault for the accidents.
But that is not always the case. If the motorcyclists are speeding or in the wrong lane, they are the ones to blame.
High-Performance Vehicle or Motorcycle
Although high-performance motorcycles comprise a small number of motorcycles in Iowa, they have been involved in a growing rate of motorcycle accidents.
Supersoft motorcycles, in particular, always contribute to this high percentage. What's surprising is that supersoft motorcycle riders are under 30 years of age.
Also, the death rate among drivers of supersoft motorcycles is four times more likely to increase than riders of conventional motorcycles.
What to Do After Car and Motorcycle Accidents
Who expects car and motorcycle accidents? Nobody would wish to be in that dangerous situation.
But if you have been involved in collisions and are unaware of what to do, below are a few things you should remember:
Find a Safer Place
After motorcycle crashes, anything might happen at the scene. So, think ahead. Examine your surroundings and find a safer place. Make sure you get out of the roadway. Also, help a group of people get to safety.
Never Remove Your Helmet and Other Protective Gear
It is normal not to feel any injuries or pain after a collision because of the adrenaline. Therefore, never take off your helmet and other gear so that your condition will not get worse.
Call the Police and An Ambulance
It is also important to call the ambulance and police to report motorcycle accidents. If you are injured, ask your passenger to call the police. After a few minutes, the police and ambulance will surely arrive at your location. You will receive the quickest medical attention you deserve. So, there is nothing to worry about.
You’re hurt. Your head is bleeding. So, gathering evidence may not cross your mind. But do not forget to obtain evidence as early as possible. Make sure to take your own pictures, request a copy of the police report, write notes, or do other things to support your claim and protect you from a lawsuit in the future. Phone a legal professional for a free consultation.
Why Should You Hire a Legal Motorcycle Accident Attorney?
A motorcycle accident is unexpected. Luckily, you are insured. However, insurance companies will not release the cache automatically. You need to file your insurance claim.
But filing your insurance claim will not go as smoothly as you imagine. They may use several tactics to minimize their financial burden.
If that happens, you do not have a choice but to hire a motorcycle accident or personal injury attorney to protect your rights and use the insurance policy you have been paying for.
If they claim that you have a preexisting condition or insist that your injuries do not cause any difficulty to your life, legal counsel can support you all the way. An accident or Des Moines personal injury lawyer will never stop until you succeed with your claim.
Safety Driving Tips for Every Car Owner and Motorcyclist
Aside from the trauma, a motorcycle accident can be financially challenging. Of course, if you are injured, expect high hospitalization costs. You also need time to recover before you get back to your old self. That’s why you cannot work right away. That’s depressing on your part.
But a motorcycle accident can be prevented. Below are some safety driving tips every motorcyclist should always remember:
While you are on the road, you will encounter lots of irresponsible drivers. You will certainly get mad. But try to be calm and patient no matter what. Always remember that reckless driving can result in serious injuries or worse deaths.
Distractions are always present when you drive. Maybe, someone texts you. Perhaps, you see a catchy ad along the road. Whatever the case may be, stay alert and focused while driving and switching a lane. Do not forget that distracted driving can increase your risk of having potential injuries.
Gears are The Best
You are already late, so you might forget to put on the seatbelts. Never do that. Always wear seat belts for every riding or driving experience.
For motorcyclists, wear a helmet and other important gear to protect your head from injuries.