Most drivers are taught to look out for cyclists, but that doesn't mean that a motorcyclist isn't ever at fault for an accident. There are many situations in which a motorcyclist is likely to be found at fault for an accident. If you've been in a motorcycle accident, either as the driver of a car or a cyclist yourself, you should call a bicycle accidents lawyer as soon as possible.
1. The Motorcyclist Was Speeding
This comes at a bit of a caveat; it can be difficult to tell how fast a motorcycle is going except in relation to other traffic, so you need to have either witnesses or traffic around to verify how fast the cyclist was going. Nevertheless, if the motorcyclist was significantly over the speed limit, they are likely to be found at fault. Due to the small size of a motorcycle, most drivers are advised to look when pulling out three times to avoid the possibility of colliding with a speeding cycle.
2. The Motorcyclist Entered an Intersection Illegally
If a motorcyclist turns into an intersection illegally or enters an intersection while the light is red, the motorist usually will not be found at fault. However, there can be some complications if the motorist was turning left; in some jurisdictions, a motorist is always assumed to be in control when they are making a left hand turn at an intersection.
3. The Motorcyclist Was Using the Bike Path
Motorcycles are not allowed in bike paths or the emergency breakdown lane -- unless, of course, they are experiencing or aiding with a breakdown. Cyclists on non-motorized vehicles can use the emergency breakdown lane if no bicycling path is available, though this usually isn't advised. If the motorcyclist was in one of these areas and merged into traffic, it will usually be the cyclist that is found to be at fault.
4. The Motorcyclist Was Lane Splitting... Sometimes
Depending on location, lane splitting is illegal. Lane splitting is the practice of driving between car lanes. If a motorcyclist is in an accident while lane splitting, in most areas, they will be considered liable. However, lane splitting is legal in the state of California.
An involvement in a cycling accident almost always necessitates a bicycle accidents lawyer, if only because the likelihood of serious physical injury is so high during a motorcycle accident. Medical costs can be substantial, and these costs may greatly exceed the amount of insurance coverage either involved party has. To learn more, visit The Law Office of Frederick J. Brynn, P.C.