When we talk about Florida motorcycle accidents, we generally focus on single rider accidents. But what about motorcycle accidents that involve an operator and a passenger?
More than 1,000 motorcycle passengers have been killed or injured in motorcycle accidents in the state of Florida over the past few years. What are the rights of a motorcycle passenger who has been injured in a Florida motorcycle accident?
Types of Motorcycle Accidents
There are two types of motorcycle accidents in Florida: those involving a single motorcycle and those involving a motorcycle and another vehicle.
When a motorcycle is involved in an accident with another vehicle, the driver of the other vehicle is usually at fault. In most instances, they simply fail to see a motorcycle when they change lanes, pull out into traffic, etc. However, motorcyclists can be at fault too. Reckless riding, such as speeding or lane splitting, can also result in an accident.
On the other hand, single motorcycle accidents are most often caused by speeding and impaired riding. Poor road conditions or adverse weather can cause a motorcycle accident as well.
Common Injuries for Motorcycle Passengers
During a Florida motorcycle accident, a passenger riding on a motorcycle faces the same potential for serious injury as the operator. Motorcycle accident injuries tend to be more serious than auto accidents due to the lack of enclosure and safety restraints. Some of the injuries a motorcycle operator or passenger can experience because of an accident include:
- Cuts and bruises
- Road rash
- Bone fractures
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Spinal cord injuries
- Head and back injuries
- Organ and soft tissue injuries
These injuries can result in devastating losses and expenses, including ongoing medical treatments, loss of income, as well as pain and suffering. Your life may never return to normal.
Preventing Injuries as a Motorcycle Passenger
To prevent these types of injuries, it is important to take precautions before riding as a passenger on a motorcycle. Make sure the operator is not just an experienced rider but one with experience riding with passengers. Take the same safety precautions as a rider — wear a helmet along with other protective gear and clothing. Never accept a ride (especially a motorcycle ride) from an impaired individual.
As an injured passenger, Florida state law gives you the right to seek compensation for the damages caused by your accident by filing a personal injury claim with the insurance company of the at-fault driver, whether that was the operator of the automobile or motorcycle.
Take Steps to Protect Your Rights After a Florida Motorcycle Accident
It’s important to protect your rights after a motorcycle accident. The smart thing to do would be to contact a personal injury attorney with experience representing motorcycle accident victims as soon as possible after the accident. A personal injury attorney can help you:
- Investigate your accident
- Gather the evidence needed to establish your claim
- Prevent you from making any mistakes that could damage your case
- Negotiate on your behalf with the insurance company
- Represent you in court
Get Help from a Lutz Motorcycle Accident Attorney Today
Lutz motorcycle accident attorney Tania Rivas and Rivas Law Group are dedicated to protecting the rights of those who have been injured due to the careless actions of another. If you were seriously hurt in a motorcycle accident while riding as a motorcycle passenger, contact Rivas Law Group to schedule a free, no-obligation initial consultation with attorney Tania Rivas. Tania will review your case, answer any legal questions you may have, and provide helpful advice on the best way to move forward with your claim.
Don’t delay — Florida state law only gives you a limited amount of time in which to file a personal injury claim. If you wait too long, the courts may refuse to hear your case!