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Houston Motorcycle Accident Attorney

Houston Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

People opt to ride motorcycles for a wide range of reasons, including affordability, ease of storage, fuel efficiency, and, most of all, because they like the feeling of freedom that comes from riding without any barriers between them and the open air.

However, cruising the open road on a motorcycle is not without its inherent dangers, including the risk of life and limb.

In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that motorcyclists are more than 20 times more likely to die in a motor vehicle crash than passenger vehicle occupants and are four times more apt to be injured.

Each Houston motorcycle accident lawyer in our office knows this all too well, as we often support injury victims or surviving family members in navigating the legal system and holding responsible parties financially liable for the harm they caused. If you’re looking for assistance in doing this yourself, one of the attorneys here at Barrera Law Group LLC can help. Get in touch with us by email or phone to schedule a complimentary consultation.

Texas Motorcycle Collision Statistics

Data from the Texas DepartmTXDOT Motorcyclist Fatalities & Injuriesent of Transportation (TxDOT) shows motorcycle accidents in our state are becoming more deadly with each passing year. In 2022 alone, 562 motorcyclists lost their lives in wrecks, which was an 8% increase over the previous year.

Crashes that didn’t result in fatalities still often resulted in serious injuries. TxDOT reports that 2,422 motorcyclists or their passengers suffered what the agency refers to as suspected serious injuries that same year. Another 3,148 accidents resulted in minor injuries, as well.

Where Motorbike Crashes Most Commonly Occur

TxDOT data also reveals that at least 70% of all collisions between automobiles and motorcycles occur at intersections. Of these, some of the most common include left-turn and rear-end crashes.

Other areas where riders are involved in wrecks include:

  • On interstates: These can occur on and off ramps, around construction zones, on shoulders, and in active traffic lanes.
  • On highly congested surface streets: Downtown areas and highways are particularly busy during rush hour, lunchtime, and when special events are happening. As motorists’ stress mounts or they become distracted or bored, they tend to make mistakes like failing to notice motorcyclists.
  • On narrow roads: Certain downtown districts and older communities tend to have narrower streets. These roadways often have head-in or parallel parking spaces on either side, which are often checkered by breaks in curbs for parking lot exits. These all leave motorcycle riders vulnerable to being struck by vehicles pulling out of their spot or from a parking lot.
  • In suburban and rural areas: Roads outside of Houston city limits or in agricultural areas tend not to see as many motorcycles. In these rural areas, roads are more likely to be winding and lack shoulders, speed limits may be higher, and traffic signals fewer. Motorists may expect to see fewer motorcyclists here than in other areas, meaning they have less experience in sharing the road with them, putting both at risk of becoming involved in a crash.

So, while statistics show motorcycle wrecks at intersections are most common, in truth, they can happen pretty much anywhere. No matter where the motorbike accident that injured you occurred, we urge you to reach out to us to discuss your case as soon as possible to learn what rights you may have to pursue compensation for your losses. Meeting with a member of our legal team for this case evaluation is free.

Why Motorcycle Crashes Occur

There’s no single factor that results in motorcyclists becoming involved in accidents. Instead, multiple factors are to blame for these collisions, including:

  • Reckless driving: This catch-all category includes speeding, failing to yield the right of way, illegal turns, tailgating, delayed braking, improper lane changes, drunk, drowsy, or distracted driving, and even road rage.
  • Motorcyclist inexperience or being out-of-practice: Newer motorcycle riders may be ill-prepared to operate their machines or specific sizes of them. Also, veterans who haven’t ridden in a long time may have gotten out of practice in operating their bikes safely, making them more vulnerable to a crash.
  • Driver unawareness and sharing the road: Car driving tests tend to focus on making sure drivers know traffic-related laws and how to best share the road with other cars and not other vehicles, like motorbikes. This means that many drivers on the road are unclear as to their responsibilities to keep motorcyclists safe.

Speak With a Houston Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

Common Injuries Motorcyclists Suffer

Texas helmet laws exist. They require motorcyclists to wear these protectionary devices if they’re under the age of 21, provided they’ve completed a TxDOT-approved motorcycle operator training class and maintain medical insurance that will cover any injuries they may sustain.

However, the 2022 TxDOT statistics cited earlier show that in that year, at least 3,225 motorcycle operators or their passengers, who were injured or died in motorcycle collisions, weren’t wearing helmets at the time.

Research conducted by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke shows that riders significantly reduce their risk of head, neck, and traumatic brain injuries, all of which have a higher risk of fatality if helmets aren’t worn.

Head, neck, and traumatic brain injuries aside, motorcyclists run the risk of suffering any of the following potentially serious injuries in a crash:

  • Road rash and burns, both of which can cause nerve damage and disfigurement
  • Dislocated joints and broken bones, including collar bones, arms, hips, legs, and ankles
  • Spinal cord injuries, resulting in paralysis
  • Blunt-force trauma injuries that can cause damage to the internal organs

Depending on the extent of these injuries, victims who survive these wrecks may require life-saving surgery and rely on around-the-clock medical care for the rest of their lives, both of which can be very costly. A Houston motorcycle accident lawyer may be able to help you secure compensation that covers losses like these so they’re not as financially devastating to you. So, contact us to discuss legal remedies you can pursue to do this today.

Proving Negligence in Collision Cases in Texas

The same four elements of negligence that apply in other motor vehicle accident cases also apply to motorcycles. Provided you can establish these elements, it’s likely that your attorney will deem you to have a valid compensation claim. Those elements are:

  • The other person owed you a duty of care
  • That prospective defendant acted in a way that breached the duty of care you were owed
  • You suffered harm because they violated that duty of care obligation
  • You have accumulated damages (losses) because you were hurt

Understanding How Liability Works When Collisions Occur in Texas

Texas is an at-fault insurance state, meaning that you can typically file a claim with the insurer of the party who caused your injuries, or a family member’s death, to recover compensation for your losses.

However, there’s also a modified comparative negligence standard in place here. This means that you, as a motorcyclist, would be unable to secure any compensation for your accident-related damages if you were determined to be more than 50% responsible for causing it.

Compensation That Injured Motorcyclists Can Recover

Texas law allows those who are hurt due to the negligence of others to file claims with the responsible party’s insurance company demanding compensation for their damages.

These damages may include:

  • Current and future medical bills
  • Lost wages

Additionally, non-economic damages, including losses like the following, may be recoverable by filing a claim or lawsuit per Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code Sec. 41.001:

  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Emotional pain or anguish
  • Loss of consortium (life partner)
  • Disfigurement
  • Physical impairment
  • Loss of companionship and society
  • Inconvenience
  • Loss in quality of life
  • Injury to reputation

There’s no cap on economic or non-economic damages.

Additional damages may be recoverable in fatal motorcycle collision cases through the filing of a wrongful death and Texas Survival Statute claim, including funeral and burial costs and loss of counsel and benefits.

Getting Help After a Motorcycle Accident Injured You in Houston

In civil cases like these, the victims must prove their case. While it may appear on the surface that they have a valid claim, they may not. And, even in cases in which they do, different factors, like any admissions they may have made at the crash scene or to insurance adjusters, may affect liability determinations and any monetary awards they may qualify for.

This is why those hurt while riding their motorcycle will typically have a lawyer analyze their claim and advise them on how best to move forward with it.

At Barrera Law Group LLC, we want to help you get the justice you deserve by filing a civil lawsuit against those responsible for hurting you or depriving you of a loved one.

Contact our law firm today to meet with a Houston motorcycle accident lawyer to discuss the rights that Texas law affords you, or your loved one, as well as the possible compensation for your losses.

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