Common Causes of Farmington Motorcycle Accidents
The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) released data indicating New Mexico is one of the most dangerous states for motorcyclists. In fact, in 2021, there were nearly eight deaths per 10,000 registered motorcycles. There are many causes of motorcycle accidents in Farmington. Some of the most common causes include:
- Driver Negligence – This includes failing to see a motorcycle, making unsafe lane changes, and failing to yield the right-of-way.
- Speeding – Motorcycles are more susceptible to the effects of speed than other vehicles, and speeding is a major factor in many motorcycle accidents.
- Alcohol and Drug Impairment – Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is extremely dangerous and can cause serious accidents.
- Road Hazards – Motorcycles are vulnerable to road hazards such as potholes, gravel, and debris.
- Lane Splitting – This is the practice of riding a motorcycle between lanes of traffic. It is legal in some states but illegal in others. It can be dangerous for both the motorcyclist and other drivers.
- Left-Turn Accidents – These often occur when a car turns left and does not see a motorcycle approaching from behind. Motorcycles can easily fit in a car’s blind spots.
- Motorcycle Defects – In rare cases, motorcycle accidents can be caused by mechanical defects in the vehicle itself. In these cases, the manufacturer or seller may be held responsible.
Typical Injuries Caused by Motorcycle Accidents in New Mexico
While every motorcycle accident is unique, there are some injuries that are more common in these types of crashes. Some riders suffer more than one injury. They may receive lifelong effects on their entire lives. Additionally, the likelihood of severe injuries increases when riders don’t wear proper safety gear.
Some common injuries in motorcycle accidents include:
- Road Rash
- Broken Bones
- Degloving Injuries
- Spinal or Nerve Damage
- Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs)
- Fatal Injuries
Damages Available in a Motorcycle Accident Claim
A New Mexico motorcycle accident attorney can help you get compensation if you’ve been injured in a crash. You can get both economic and non-economic damages for your losses.
Economic damages compensate you for out-of-pocket costs such as medical bills, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, and property damage.
Non-economic damages represent other types of losses that are not as easily quantified. They can include pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and emotional distress. Your attorney can determine exactly how much your non-economic damages are worth.
Evidence in a Motorcycle Accident
It can be difficult to prove that the other driver was responsible for your accident. Working with a Farmington motorcycle accident lawyer gives you a better chance. Your attorney will use some of the following types of evidence to prove liability:
- Eyewitness Testimony – Eyewitnesses can provide testimony about what they saw before, during, and after the accident. This testimony can be beneficial in proving how the accident occurred and who was at fault.
- Police Reports – Accident reports contain information about the accident. They’ll have the time and location of the accident, the vehicles involved, and any statements made by the drivers or witnesses. Police reports can also include diagrams or sketches of the accident scene.
- Medical Records – Medical records can show the nature and extent of the injured party’s injuries. This information can be used to establish that the accident caused the injuries.
- Expert Testimony – Expert witnesses, such as accident reconstructionists, can testify how the accident occurred and who was at fault. Expert witnesses can also testify about the long-term effects of injuries.
What is Negligence in New Mexico Personal Injury Cases?
To prove liability in a motorcycle accident, you must show that the other driver was negligent. Negligence is a failure to exercise the degree of care that a reasonable person would exercise in a similar situation.
To prove negligence, you must show the following four elements:
- Duty – The defendant owed you a duty of care.
- Breach – The defendant breached that duty of care.
- Causation – The defendant’s breach of duty caused your injuries.
- Damages – You suffered damages because of your injuries.
How to File a Motorcycle Accident Claim
Here are some things you should do after a motorcycle accident:
- Call 911 immediately. Check yourself and any other passengers for injuries.
- Move to a safe location. If your motorcycle is blocking traffic or is in a dangerous location, move it to a safe place if you can. If you cannot move your bike, turn on your hazard lights and wait for help to arrive.
- Exchange information with the other driver. Get their name, address, phone number, and insurance information. Also, get the make, model, and license plate number of their vehicle.
- File a police report. Even if the accident is minor, reporting the accident and create a record of what happened.
- Take photos of the accident scene. Get photos of your damaged motorcycle, injuries, and the other vehicle. Also, take photos of the surrounding area, including any skid marks, debris, or traffic signs.
- Contact a New Mexico motorcycle accident lawyer. A motorcycle accident lawyer can help you with all aspects of your claim. They can help you gather evidence, negotiate a settlement, and file a lawsuit.
By following these steps, you can protect your rights and get the compensation you deserve after a motorcycle accident.
How Can a Personal Injury Lawyer Help Me?
A motorcycle accident attorney can help you navigate the complexities of the New Mexico legal system after a crash.
After a motorcycle wreck, you have a three-year deadline (“statute of limitations”) to file a lawsuit. Your attorney can help you draft legal documents and make sure you don’t miss any deadlines.
Insurance companies don’t like to pay victims after a crash. Your motorcycle accident lawyer can provide you with both emotional and legal support while you recover.
You have a better chance of recovering the maximum amount of compensation when you work with an attorney. They will gather evidence, negotiate with insurance companies and other parties, and help you handle all the paperwork.
Call a Farmington Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Now
Attorney Shellie Patscheck cares about motorcycle accident victims and wants you and your family to get justice. You shouldn’t shoulder the burden of someone else’s negligence. Call us today at (505) 325-9898 or contact us online to schedule a case consultation.