Fall is the perfect time to hop on your motorcycle and check out some of the beautiful scenery that Minnesota has to offer along the open road. However, every motorcyclist knows that they need to be hyper aware of their surroundings when they are riding because they are much more vulnerable to accident and injury than standard vehicle drivers. But what types of motorcycle accidents are most common, and how can motorcyclists prevent these accidents? We answer those questions and more in today’s blog.
Three Common Causes Of Motorcycle Accidents
Not all automobile accidents are preventable, but if you know where the risk lies and how to minimize your likelihood of being involved in an accident, you reduce the chance of needing to hire a motorcycle accident attorney like Dean Margolis to fight your case. Here’s a look at three of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents in Minnesota.
1. Lane Changes – Lane changes are likely one of the most dangerous driving maneuvers for anyone on the road, because if a driver tries to move to a spot that’s already occupied by another driver, or two vehicles try to merge into the same spot, an accident can occur in a second. Lane changes can be especially dangerous for motorcyclists, who aren’t always as easily spotted as larger vehicles.
Smart motorcycle drivers know that they need to drive defensively and assume that other drivers may not see them, so they need to do what they can to avoid being in another person’s blind spot. Don’t ride in a location where another driver has to turn their head to see you. Always try to be in a spot where a person can view you with their mirrors, and pass vehicles quickly so you don’t linger in their blind spot. Also keep an eye on nearby cars to look for signals that suggest they may soon change lanes.
2. Left Turns – Turning left across an incoming lane of traffic can also be a very dangerous maneuver, but not always for the driver making the turn. Drivers in the other lane will be continuing quickly down the road while someone else turns through their lane, and if the driver making the turn does not spot them approaching, they can pull out in front of someone going very fast in the opposite direction.
Not surprisingly, the drivers that are toughest to see approaching from the opposite direction are smaller motorcyclists. Some drivers may be passively looking for vehicles and end up blind to smaller equipment like motorcyclists. If you are approaching an area where another driver is waiting to make a left turn across traffic, approach with caution. Slow down a little, watch for signs that they are preparing to start the turn (wheels changing direction or starting to move out into the lane), and be ready to perform an evasive maneuver if the situation presents itself.
3. Head On Collisions – Finally, head on collisions are the deadliest form of motorcycle accident, as 58 percent of all fatal motorcycle accidents involve a head on collision. These typically occur when another driver drifts into your lane or takes a turn too wide on a two-lane road. Again, you need to be hyper aware of other drivers when you’re on the road. If you are approaching a sharp or blind turn, really slow down and know that any driver coming from the opposite direction could end up drifting into your lane if they approached the turn too quickly.
Head-on collisions can be the most difficult types of accidents to prevent because they can happen at a moment’s notice when two drivers are heading towards each other at high speeds. All we can say is to drive at safe speeds, be aware of other drivers on the road, and be ready to move your motorcycle out of the way if you suspect danger could be headed your way.
Hopefully you’ll never need to connect with a personal injury attorney to file for compensation in the wake of a motorcycle accident, but you can take solace in knowing that we’re here for you in the event that an accident strikes. For more information about pursuing injury compensation after a motorcycle accident in Minnesota, reach out to Dean and the team at Margolis Law Firm today.
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