Changing lanes is a basic driving skill that motorists perform multiple times a day. However, negligent drivers cause many tragic accidents in Norfolk when they make unsafe lane changes. Unfortunately, the victims of these crashes are often motorcycle riders who can suffer life-altering injuries or death. If you or a family member were injured in an unsafe lane change crash, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries from the at-fault driver.
How Driver Negligence Make Unsafe Lane Changes
As with other types of motorcycle accidents, there are many reasons that people make dangerous lane changes. Here are five leading causes of these preventable wrecks:
- Distracted driving. A driver who is talking on a cell phone, texting, reading his GPS, or distracted in other ways does not have his full attention on his driving. He could forget to signal or check his blind spots before changing lanes and smash into a motorcycle rider driving in the adjoining lane.
- Speeding. When a driver is speeding, he may not have time to slow down or change course if he decides to switch lanes and suddenly realizes that he is going to collide with a motorcycle that has the right of way.
- Intoxication. A drunk or high driver can cause an unsafe lane change accident due to impairments in his vision, judgment, reaction time, and other driving abilities.
- Blind spots. Motorcycles are much less visible than much larger motor vehicles and trucks are even more likely to be hidden in a driver’s blind spot. When motorists do not check their blind spots before switching lanes, an unsafe lane change motorcycle accident is the likely consequence.
- Turn signals. All drivers in Virginia are required to use their turn signal to alert nearby motorists and motorcyclists that they plan to change lanes. When they fail to do so, a nearby motorcycle rider will not have time to take any defensive actions that may avoid a collision.
Five Steps You Need to Take to Protect Your Legal Rights
If you want to obtain all the compensation you deserve for your injuries, you need to take immediate steps to protect your legal rights. Here are five first steps you should consider:
- Get prompt medical care—even if you do not believe you are hurt or that your injuries are serious.
- Contact the police at the accident scene and obtain the police report.
- Get the contact information for the negligent driver, his insurance company, and any witnesses to your collision.
- Take pictures of the damage to your motorcycle, the vehicle that hit you, the crash scene, your injuries, and anything else you believe can help you prove the other motorist’s negligence in causing your accident.
- Retain an experienced motorcycle accident attorney as soon as possible. He can help you collect the evidence you need, file your claim, and negotiate your settlement so that you receive all that you deserve.
Do you or a loved one need to file a claim with the negligent driver’s insurance company? Our skilled legal team has over 100 years of combined experience protecting the rights of motorcycle accident victims. We handle these cases on a contingency fee basis so you owe no attorney fees until we win your case. Call our office to take advantage of our offer of a free consultation to learn more about how we can help you.