Motorcycle Accidents with Cars and the Dreaded Left Turn

Man on a motorcycle in the road

One of the most common motorcycle accidents occurs when a car turns left into an oncoming motorcycle that has the right of way. Here on Long Island we have associates and friends who love to ride, but unfortunately have experienced these types of devastating accidents.

Here’s a rundown of what takes place. A car fails to see you or judges your speed incorrectly, turning in front of you at an intersection. Blame inattention, distraction, blind spots and even psychology. A driver looking for cars perceives merely an absence of cars, not the presence of a motorcycle. Before you know it there’s a loud thunderous noise, and they are hitting you.

Be Proactive in Avoiding These Accidents.

Use your lights day or night, wear protective and vibrant clothing, and use a helmet certified by the U.S. Department of Transportation, which is also mandatory by New York State law. Not wearing a helmet makes a motorcyclist 37% more likely to sustain a fatal head injury during an accident.

Part of your job as a motorcyclist is to develop a precognitive sixth sense. Look for signs that someone may be turning in front of you. This could be the car sitting at the intersection waiting to turn. There could be a gap at the intersection, driveway or parking lot. Take it slow in these situations, cover your breaks and be on alert to move out of harm’s way. You should consider the car waiting in a turn lane as a major and immediate threat to your life. Don’t forget about objects outside of your vision either. Gaps in traffic indicate the possibility of someone coming through that gap, even if you can’t see them. These are major threats, so be prepared for evasive maneuvers.

Once you see the threat, go through a security check list.

  • Does the driver have a clear view of you free from obstructions?
  • Is the driving looking at you, talking on a cell phone, texting?
  • What is their speed?
  • Where are their wheels pointing? (The wheel direction will clue you in on the direction the car will move.)

Plan Your Route of Escape. You should take note of what’s behind you and to your side. When braking, pay attention to the road surface and use the appropriate amount. Your best chance of survival comes from shedding as much speed as possible pre-collision, with an upright bike, using both brakes. It could save your life.

For more information you can read our motorcycle accident article. If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident please contact us for a free, no obligation consultation. You may be entitled to financial compensation. We will make sure to answer all your questions, discuss your legal options and let you know what to expect from the legal process. Call today 516-874-0466 or fill out our webform.

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