Top Types of Injuries During Motorcycle Crashes in New Jersey
Many of those with an adventurous spirit choose to ride a motorcycle rather than opting for other less exciting forms of transportation. There is a distinct feeling of freedom, almost rebelliousness, enjoyed by motorcycle enthusiasts. But there is a price to pay as well. In New Jersey, motorcyclists are almost 30 times more likely to die in a crash and five times more likely to be injured than people in cars. From 2012 to 2016, there were more than 12,000 vehicle accidents involving motorcycles. Riders in New Jersey have a more than 80% chance of injury from an accident. More than two-thirds of motorcycle accidents occur due to excessive speed, while 33% of fatalities were instances where alcohol was a factor. Forty percent of motorcyclist fatalities whose accident did not involve a motor vehicle were in the process of maneuvering a curve or corner. Most recently, in 2019, 1,500 motorcycle crashes caused 1,341 injuries and killed 58 people.
If you or a loved one is, unfortunately, part of the statistics for suffering injuries in a motorcycle accident in New Jersey, our injury firm is ready to listen to your case and provide legal assistance. We handle personal injury cases involving motorcycle crashes in Long Branch, Lavallette, Red Bank, Freehold, Asbury Park, Brick, Ocean Township, and throughout Ocean and Monmouth County. Our team will work hard to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve, taking into account medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and any property damage. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at (732) 303-7857.
Wide Variety of Injuries that may Occur in Motorcycle Accident in NJ
The injuries suffered by motorcycle riders can range from scratches and scrapes to life-threatening emergencies, primarily due to whether or not the rider was using safety equipment at the time of the accident. TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury), concussion, or skull fracture are common injuries. Brain injuries can permanently affect motor function, cognitive capabilities, memory, and mental health.
Back injuries can cause life-long pain and debilitating health issues, requiring multiple surgical interventions or extensive painful rehabilitation. Victims can be subjected to a lifetime of pain management, including regular injections, invasive procedures, and taking pain medications that can produce a possible addiction.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Spinal cord injuries can also occur in a motorcycle accident. These injuries can span from minor inflammation to paralysis that causes loss of limb function and sensation throughout the body. The gravity of the injury is based on its location in the spinal column and the extent to which the spinal cord has been compromised.
Loss of Limb
Unfortunately, in some motorcycle accidents, a rider’s arms or legs become pressed under another vehicle or standing object. If the blood flow to those extremities is affected, the rider is at risk for infection, sepsis, or death. To prevent further damage to the rest of the body, sometimes doctors are forced to amputate the injured limb, forever changing the rider’s life and leaving them permanently disabled.
When a biker crashes and skids along the road with their body, the friction can tear away their clothing and several layers of skin, resulting in what is known as road rash. Bad cases of road rash can take months to heal and are a risk for infection due to the dirt and gravel embedded in the skin. This injury can leave discolored, ugly scars.
Other Types of Injuries
Other dangerous injuries include broken bones, exposed fractures, internal organ injuries, internal hemorrhaging, and deep lacerations.
Some injuries cause riders to miss work for several weeks or months. They may develop anxiety or depression as a result. PTSD is frequently experienced by motorcycle riders who are victims of serious accidents, requiring therapy and medication.
Contributing Factors to Motorcycle Crashes
Distracted driving is dangerous to everyone on the road. Texting, looking at your phone, recording your latest Tik Tok, and rubbernecking are all dangerous distractions. Anything that takes your eyes and attention off the road in front of you can be deadly. If you are driving over the speed limit, it reduces the time you have to avoid potential problems. Speed limits are not placed arbitrarily. They are decided upon by engineers who study the terrain and the number of inlet roads, businesses, and residences in the area. Given the determined circumstances, the speed limit is the safest speed you can travel.
Moreover, a motorcycle does not stop on a dime; breaking hard can cause you to lose your balance and slide, or you could hit the vehicle in front of you. As with passenger vehicles, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol can impair your reaction time and ability to keep yourself and those around you safe. There is much debate about our next safety issue: lane splitting. Lane splitting (also known as white lining) occurs when a motorcyclist rides the white line between two lanes of traffic and is not illegal in New Jersey.
Studies have shown that fewer motorcyclists are rear-ended using this technique, but many drivers do not see them when changing lanes, causing an accident. Motorcyclists are more susceptible to accidents caused by potholes, uneven asphalt, gravel, or debris on the roadway. Weather conditions can also cause precarious situations for motorcyclists; rain, fog, hail, snow, wind, and freezing conditions all cause dangers to everyone on the road, especially motorcyclists.
Inexperienced riders have a higher risk of accidents as they may need more skills under challenging scenarios. However, less frequently than in other instances, motorcycle defects such as faulty brakes, steering mechanisms, tires, or other manufacturing problems can also cause an accident.
Potential Long-Term Injuries and Complications Resulting from a Motorcycle Accident
Motorcyclists can still suffer from traumatic brain injury in an accident despite using a helmet. These injuries can manifest as impaired cognitive ability, memory loss, seizures, chronic headaches, blurry vision, insomnia, and hearing problems. The side effects of TBI are reversible in some cases.
Nerve damage, tingling, and muscle weakness can be significant after an accident. Neck injuries can cause chronic pain and damage to the nervous system overall. As mentioned, spinal injuries can cause partial or complete paralysis and difficulty breathing.
Burn injuries can cause range of motion issues, reduced strength and muscle tissue, and severe scarring. Burns are prone to infection and require long-term care. Burn scars can be emotionally debilitating. The last long-term injury is probably the most traumatic. An amputation due to a crushed arm or leg is a life-threatening injury requiring several surgeries. Phantom pain from the missing limb, hundreds of hours of physical therapy, and learning to use a prosthetic are some of the challenges of losing a limb.
Coping with Permanent Disability After a Motorcycle Accident
When a motorcycle accident is serious enough to cause a permanent disability, the rider and their family are affected. To receive Social Security benefits, you must prove that due to your injury, you will need at least a year to recover and will be unable to work because of your condition. The New Jersey Social Security will review your case and decide. Injuries that can potentially cause permanent disabilities are a TBI, nerve damage, amputation, spinal cord damage, fractured or crushed bones, burns, neck injuries, hearing or vision injuries, and paralysis.
Living with a permanent disability can impact your life in many ways. If your mobility is affected, you will need special chairs, crutches, prostheses, and other equipment to make your daily life possible. You will need occupational and rehabilitation therapy and transportation to and from the therapy centers. You must remodel the entrances and exits of the doorways inside and out of your house. You may need a particular vehicle to be driven or to drive yourself.
A permanent disability can leave you and your family financially crippled. If you contemplate the expenses, the missed wages, and the future cost of living to adapt to your new condition, filing a lawsuit against those who caused your accident could go a long way in paying for your needs. Disability benefits will help, but they won’t be enough to cover everything.
How Do Motorcycle Accidents Result in Wrongful Death?
Motorcyclists are almost 30 times more likely to die in an accident than those behind the wheel. Drinking and driving, road rage, speeding, or distracted driving are some of the reasons why passenger vehicles collide with motorcyclists. When you lose a loved one, you want those who caused the accident to be held accountable. Medical bills and funeral costs, loss of companionship, and loss of future wages must be considered in a settlement situation.
What Type of Settlement Can I Seek After A Motorcycle Accident?
As long as you aren’t 51% or more at fault for your accident, you could be eligible to recover damages (financial compensation) for your injuries and other costs incurred due to the accident. Medical treatments, hospital stays, and medical procedures, including surgery, rehabilitation, etc., are some of the damages you could receive. Lost wages and lost future wages are also considered. Loss of consortium, enjoyment of daily life, pain and suffering, and property damage are also examined. The injured party’s family can also claim wrongful death.
Find out Your Compensation Options if Have been Injured in a Motorcycle Accident in New Jersey
Our personal injury attorneys understand what it takes to represent you in your motorcycle accident case in Rumson, Manchester, Sea Bright, Middletown, Belmar, and other Monmouth and Ocean County towns. We are skilled professionals at gathering the evidence you need to prove someone else’s responsibility in your accident. We won’t allow someone else’s negligence to prevent you from living a full life.
We will investigate the accident, deal with the insurance companies, and fight for what you deserve under the law. Most personal injury cases are settled out of court, but we are always prepared to litigate for you if necessary.
The statute of limitations for a personal injury case is only two years, so there is no time to delay. Call us today at (732) 303-7857 or contact us online to make a free consultation. Let our experience and commitment work for you.