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At Canter Levin & Berg, each year our road accident solicitors deal with claims made by injured motorcyclists who have been knocked off their bikes through no fault of their own.
As some of the most vulnerable road users, motorcyclists have a higher likelihood of a serious injury if they are involved in a road traffic accident. Below we’ve put together a list of three of the most common types of motorcycle accidents our solicitors have dealt with and some of the steps you can take to avoid these kinds of accident.
If you’ve been injured in an accident similar to any of those listed below, remember we’re here if you need independent legal advice about making a road accident compensation claim against those responsible for the injuries you have suffered.
Sometimes referred to as sideswiping, this common motorcycle accident happens when the driver of a vehicle in front of you turns without checking for any other road users travelling behind or without noticing you are there. If the turn is made without suddenly, without sufficient warning then it can be difficult for you to slow down without losing control of your bike or hitting the side of the vehicle in front as it turns.
Avoiding this type of common motorcycle accident requires you to anticipate and be aware of what drivers in front of you might be about to do. Look for cars waiting at traffic lights to turn, signs indicating a junction is coming up or in residential areas, cars slowing down as they approach a driveway. Checking the direction of the wheels of the vehicle in front will also give you a slight advantage, which might be all you need to make an evasive manoeuvre to avoid a collision.
There are two other risks you should bear in mind when taking action to avoid a collision with a turning vehicle. Firstly, if you apply your brakes in time and manage to avoid the vehicle in front, there is no guarantee that anyone travelling behind you will react as quickly or be able to stop in time without hitting you. This is especially relevant when the road surface is wet or icy, as braking distances will increase for all vehicles. Secondly, attempting to slide the bike on its side to avoid a collision is a very dangerous tactic, as once the wheels of your bike are no longer in contact with the road you’ll lose control of your speed and direction.
Cars, vans and other vehicles can change lanes on motorways and dual carriageways often with little warning and whilst their drivers may have checked in their rear-view mirrors for larger vehicles, as a motorcyclist you could be in their blind spot, or they might simply not notice you are there. As these types of motorcycle accident happen mainly on motorways and dual carriageways, where speeds are higher, there is a greater risk of suffering serious injuries.
Avoiding a collision with a vehicle that is changing lanes on a motorway or dual carriageway requires you to be aware of the potential blind spots of the vehicles in front and either side of your bike. There are also other tell-tale signs a vehicle is about to change lanes; slowing traffic, vehicles in one lane moving more quickly than the other lanes, flashing indicators and the wheels of the vehicle in front beginning to turn. If you stay alert and recognise these signs, then you should have enough time to make an evasive manoeuvre to avoid an accident.
Sometimes referred to as rear-end shunts, this common type of motorcycle accident usually happens somewhere that traffic is required to slow down, such as at a junction or a pedestrian crossing. In nearly all cases, a motorist travelling behind you either does not realise there is a need to slow down or reacts too slowly and goes into the back of your bike. A rear-end shunt can potentially be a very serious accident for a motorcyclist to be involved in, as it is quite likely your bike will be knocked out from under you.
Avoiding a rear-end shunt whilst on a bike requires some forward planning before you reach a junction. You should aim to take up a position at the junction that allows you to move away quickly whilst keeping vehicles that have already stopped between you and traffic that is still slowing down. Keep your bike in gear, be aware and be prepared to move out of the way if it looks like another motorist isn’t going to slow down in time.
If you are unfortunate enough to be injured in one of the common motorcycle accidents we’ve mentioned above, or any other accident whilst on your bike that wasn’t your fault, Canter Levin & Berg can help.
Our road traffic accident solicitors have helped hundreds of motorcyclists to successfully claim compensation after they’ve been injured. This includes situations where other drivers have unexpectedly changed lanes, failed to stop in time at junctions and for many other reasons.
Make a motorcycle accident compensation claim with us and well see to it that your bike is recovered, if possible repaired and any clothing or possessions damaged in the accident are repaired or replaced.
We’ll also include in the amount we claim for you the wages you may have lost if your injuries prevented you from returning to work and we can make sure your claim will provide you with the finances to afford any additional medical expenses.
If you’ve got questions about claiming for anything not listed here, call our offices on 0151 239 1180. Our solicitors can discuss your accident, your injuries and how we can help get your motorcycle accident compensation claim started today.