Personal Injury Lawyer Silver Spring, MD

Maryland Motorcycle Accidents Often Result in Severe Injury

A man rides a motorcycle in city traffic.

May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month

Motorcycles offer a convenient means of transportation, particularly in Maryland's warmer months. However, the state sees its share of motorcycle accidents, which can have severe consequences. According to the Maryland Department of Transportation (Maryland DOT), these accidents often result in serious injuries or fatalities.

“When there is a crash involving a motorist and a motorcycle, the motorcyclist always loses,” says a Maryland DOT report about motorcycle crashes. “Because motorcycle riders are not protected by the vehicle like the occupants of a car, motorcyclists account for 91 percent of all people injured in a motorcycle involved crash.”

Motorcycle accidents on the rise in Maryland

Statistics indicate a troubling trend: motorcycle accidents in Maryland are resulting in more injuries and fatalities almost every year. Data from Zero Deaths Maryland, an initiative aimed at eliminating motor vehicle fatalities, highlights this increase between 2018 and 2022.

In 2018, Maryland reported 56 fatalities, 943 injuries, and 1,274 motorcycle crashes. By contrast, in 2022, 75 fatalities, 966 injuries, and 1,338 motorcycle accidents were recorded across the state. Over this five-year period, Maryland averaged 73 deaths, 935 injuries, and 1,300 crashes annually related to motorcycle accidents.

Why do motorcycle accidents happen in Maryland?

Maryland’s motorcycle accident studies didn’t explain why these collisions occurred so often in Maryland. However, national data compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the National Safety Council (NSC) identified several common causes of motorcycle accidents, including:

  • Speeding, which was a contributing factor in 34 percent of motorcycle accident fatalities, according to the NHTSA.
  • Impaired driving, which contributed to 27 percent of motorcycle accident deaths, according to NHTSA.
  • Distracted driving, especially texting while driving, which increasingly plays a significant role in many motorcycle accidents.

Who’s most at risk of being involved in a motorcycle crash?

Motorcycle accidents in Maryland often involve certain motorcyclists and certain times of day or week. According to Zero Deaths Maryland, such high-risk motorcyclists and scenarios include:

  • Male motorcyclists – 93 percent of motorcyclists injured in Maryland were men.
  • Motorcyclists between the ages of 21 and 34 years old – They accounted for 43 percent of all motorcycle accident fatalities in Maryland between 2017 and 2021.
  • Weekends – 56 percent of motorcycle fatalities in Maryland occur between Friday and Sunday.
  • Warmer months – More motorcycle accidents occur in Maryland between April and October than during colder, winter months.

What can motorcyclists and drivers do to prevent motorcycle accidents?

There are many things drivers and motorcyclists can do to prevent accidents involving motorcycles. Some of the safety tips suggested by the American Motorcycle Association (AMA) include:

  • Drivers should always look for motorcyclists before changing lanes or making a turn, especially a left-hand turn, since that maneuver is one of the most common causes of motorcycle crashes.
  • Give motorcyclists enough space when following them. Don’t tailgate. Otherwise, a rear-end motorcycle accident could occur.
  • Speeding drivers need to slow down and avoid hitting slower-moving motorcycles.
  • Drivers need to put down their cell phones while driving. Distracted driving has quickly become one of the leading causes of motorcycle crashes and other motor vehicle accidents.

Common motorcycle accident injuries

Injuries sustained in motorcycle accidents can be severe and life-altering. These injuries often include:

  • Road Rash: Abrasions and lacerations caused by sliding across the pavement.
  • Fractures: Broken bones, commonly in the legs, arms, and wrists.
  • Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI): Head injuries ranging from concussions to severe brain damage.
  • Spinal Cord Injuries: Damage to the spinal cord leading to paralysis or loss of function.
  • Soft Tissue Injuries: Damage to muscles, ligaments, and tendons, often resulting in pain and limited mobility.
  • Internal Injuries: Damage to organs such as the liver, spleen, or lungs, which can be life-threatening.
  • Amputations: Loss of limbs due to the severity of the accident.
  • Burns: Thermal or chemical burns from contact with hot surfaces or fluids.

These injuries can have long-term consequences, requiring extensive medical treatment and rehabilitation. If you've suffered any of these injuries in a motorcycle accident, it's essential to seek legal representation to protect your rights and pursue compensation for your losses.

Why should I hire a Maryland motorcycle accident attorney?

You might think you don’t need a lawyer if another driver caused your motorcycle accident. But the reality is claims involving motorcycle accidents often turn into complicated legal cases. That’s because there can be a lot at stake for those involved, especially if you sustained serious injuries.

Additionally, it's crucial to recognize that insurance companies often have a bias against motorcyclists and employ various tactics to minimize payouts or deny claims. Seeking legal representation can help ensure your rights are protected and put you in a position to recover the compensation you deserve.

Our motorcycle accident lawyers at Goldberg Finnegan fight for injured riders and understand the unique challenges they face in the aftermath of a serious crash. Our law firm is dedicated to holding negligent drivers accountable for their actions and building strong cases that get meaningful results.

Don’t settle for less than you deserve after a motorcycle accident. Contact our law firm and schedule a free case evaluation to see how we can help you. Our primary office is located in Silver Spring, and we handle motorcycle accident injury claims and lawsuits throughout Maryland.

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