Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Serving Wellington
When it comes to motorcycle accidents, occurrences of this type in Wellington are far more common than most residents realize. A lot of this is related to the fact that the weather in Wellington is perfect for motorcycle riding. Wellington is noted for its abundance of sunshine and lack of a severe winter. While, at first, this might seem to be an advantage for those who love to ride motorcycles, it has also made the state number one when it came to motorcycle accident deaths in 2015. Actually, about 19% of all fatalities involving vehicle accidents can be attributed to motorcycle riding. But when a bike accident does occur, then the services of a motorcycle accident lawyer near Wellington may be the key to obtaining the compensation that you deserve. In addition, there is a need for increased knowledge of motorcycle safety on our nation’s roadways.Florida Statutes that pertain to motorcycle safety
Due to the prevalence of motorcycle accidents in the state, a number of statutes have been enacted in order to deal with this situation. As a matter of fact, some of these statutes are actually unique to Wellington (and the rest of the state). They include:
- It’s considered to be a moving violation to “show off” one’s riding prowess by performing what’s known as a “wheelie”. That is riding while one of the cycle’s tires is off the ground. This is seen in Florida Statute 316.2085 (2). Of course, we’re not talking about a situation where a cycle’s tires have left the ground due to some sort of road condition or obstruction.
- If someone already has a standard driver’s license in Wellington and they wish to add a motorcycle endorsement, they will need to adhere to the current state regulations. These include; they must be at least 16 years old, those who are under the age of 18 must have had no previous traffic violations for a period of one year prior to application, the original license must at least be a Class E and everyone, no matter their age, must take a basic motorcycle riding course.
- A motorcycle-only license or a motorcycle endorsement on a regular driver’s license must be held in order to operate motorcycles that have engines that are larger than 50 cc.
- Those motorcyclists who are over 21 years old will need to possess at least $10,000.00 worth of medical insurance coverage, should they opt not to wear a helmet. This is in deference to the possibility of a serious head injury that may occur as a result of not wearing head protection. Even though this law is in place, it is noted that about 1 out of 7 of those who need to have this insurance have failed to obtain it.
- Those who are under the age of 21 must wear a motorcycle helmet that adheres to government specifications.
- All motorcyclists must wear protection for their eyes.
The general public can sometimes have some misconceptions when it comes to understanding just who is usually responsible when it comes to motorcycle accidents. Motorcycle accidents typically occur as a result of negligence. The legal definition of negligence has to do with one party performing a breach of their duty of care to another party. As a result of this breach, an accident has occurred in which damages were the result.
When we say “duty of care”, we’re referring to following the statutes that have been enacted in order to make motoring safe. These laws include items such as not driving past the speed limit, using the proper turn signals, refraining from driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol and respecting the proper vehicle right-of-way designations.
Once it’s been determined that a breach of care has led directly to an accident in which damages have been incurred, then it’s possible that the victim may be awarded compensation for both their economic and non-economic damages.What are some types of damages that can result in a Wellington motorcycle accident?
Motorcycle accidents are notorious for causing catastrophic injuries to those who are riding. Some of these injuries include:
- Bone fractures
- Severe head trauma
- Spinal cord injuries
- Neck injuries
- Brain damage
- Loss of limbs
In addition, there are also economic losses that may include:
- Time away from work
- The inability to go back to work
- Medical expenses
- Property loss (vehicle, etc.)
Non-economic losses can include:
- Mental stress
- Post-traumatic illness
- Other psychological problems
- Loss of consortium
In the case of a wrongful death claim:
- Medical Bills
- Sudden Funeral and Burial Expenses
- Loss of Support, Companionship, Parental Guidance
This question can commonly be raised as a result of the aforementioned “misconceptions”. This may have to do with the image of a motorcyclist as a rebellious sort of individual who has little regard for the rules of the road. However, the opposite is actually the case. When we take a look at the statistics, we can see that the majority of accidents involving motorcycles are the fault of the person driving a car or truck. A study to this effect was conducted by the University of South Florida’s Center for Urban Transportation Research. In that study, it was discovered that about 60% of accidents involving motorcycles were deemed to be the fault of a vehicle other than the motorcycle. This was reported in the Sun Sentinel – in South Florida.
One of the more common factors of these accidents had to do with a situation in which a vehicle refused to give the required right of way to the motorcycle. This can happen if the driver or a truck or car hasn’t mentally “registered” the presence of a smaller vehicle (motorcycle). Or it could mean that the driver of the larger vehicle somehow expected the smaller vehicle to suddenly move out of the way. All of these circumstances have one thing in common – negligence when it comes to following current statutes.
Cell phones, as in other types of vehicle accidents, have been known to play a negative role in vehicle safety. As a result, a new law was recently enacted that has to do with the use of cell phones, when operating a motor vehicle. In this case, it is now considered a primary motor vehicle violation to be operating a cell phone and a vehicle at the same time (except under certain circumstances). This is a major change from when it was only considered a secondary violation, earlier in 2019. This means that the police can pull over a vehicle and issue a citation if they should happen to see a driver using a cell phone, under most circumstances. More information may be found in Florida Statute 316.305.Motorcycle Safety Statutes
There are a number of current Wellington statutes that relate to motorcycle safety, in order to prevent motorcycle accident injuries and fatalities. These include:
- No individual shall operate a motorcycle with a helmet that is equipped with a headphone, headset or other form of listening device other than a hearing aid. https://www.flsenate.gov/Laws/Statutes/2012/316.304
According to section 316.304(2), this does not apply to;
- Any person operating a motorcycle who is using a headset that is installed in a helmet and worn so as to prevent the speakers from making direct contact with the user’s ears so that the user can hear surrounding sounds.
- Any person using a headset in conjunction with a cellular telephone that only provides sound through one ear and allows surrounding sounds to be heard with the other ear.
- Any person using a headset in conjunction with communicating with the central base operation that only provides sound through one ear and allows surrounding sounds to be heard with the other ear.
- Every vehicle shall be equipped with a mirror so located as to reflect to the driver a view of the highway for a distance of at least 200 feet to the rear of the motor vehicle. section 316.294
- Every motorcycle shall be equipped with at least one stop lamp. section 316.420
- Every motorcycle shall be equipped with multiple-beam road lighting equipment. section 316.430(1)
Such equipment shall:
Reveal persons and vehicles at a distance of at least 300 feet ahead when the uppermost distribution of light is selected; section 316.430(2)(a)
Reveal persons and vehicles at a distance of at least 150 feet ahead when the lowermost distribution of light is selected. section 316.430(2)(b)
All motorcycles are entitled to full use of a lane and no motor vehicle shall be driven in such manner as to deprive any motorcycle of the full use of a lane. This subsection shall not apply to motorcycles operated two abreast in a single lane. section 316.209(1)
A person may not operate or ride upon a motorcycle unless the person is properly wearing protective headgear securely fastened upon his or her head which complies with Federal Motorcycle Vehicle Safety Standard 218 promulgated by the United States Department of Transportation. The Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles shall adopt this standard by agency rule. section 316.211(1)What should I do if I’m in a motorcycle accident?
If you become involved in a Wellington motorcycle accident, there are some steps to take that are suggested by motorcycle accident lawyers who serve Wellington. The first thing that you’ll want to do is attempt to remain calm and determine the extent of any physical injuries. At that time, you will immediately want to contact the Wellington Police Department and report what’s happened.
Afterwards, you should contact emergency medical services if there are any injuries and for those who have asked for assistance. You will want to exchange information with the other party. This includes; name, contact information, car make and model, driver’s license number and insurance information. You will also want to get the names and contact information of any witnesses and take any photos of the accident scene, if possible. When the police arrive, give them your utmost cooperation.
Afterwards, you should go to the hospital or seek medical care with your primary physician. This is extremely important. Many injuries that result from a vehicle accident can become apparent hours, or even days, after the initial trauma. This is why you should get a full checkup from the doctor and make sure to keep a copy of any medical records and medical bills. Place these in a separate file at home. You should also make an appointment for a follow up checkup in order to see if any further injury has manifested.
Get in touch with your insurance company and never discuss anything with the other party’s insurance or legal representatives. Make sure not to sign anything or accept any money that is offered until you have consulted with a motorcycle accident attorney, serving Wellington. The first appointment is free and you can get some valuable information regarding your options when it comes to compensation.Enlist an Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer to Protect Your Rights
Deaths and injuries from a Florida motorcycle accident can be the result of reckless behavior, which may occur in Wellington at any given time. In addition, it’s important to understand that while high speeds are often a factor, there are also many times when this isn’t the situation. There have been a number of cases in which a very low speed motorcycle crash has resulted in an injury that eventually led to a person’s death. The injuries involved may include brain damage and various internal organ injuries. Therefore, if you or a loved one are involved in a Florida motorcycle accident, it is advised that you seek medical care and the advice of a motorcycle accident personal injury attorney. Your initial appointment is free of charge.
Discuss your case with a Motorcycle Accident Personal Injury Attorney Serving Wellington Today! Turn to Frankl & Kominsky for comprehensive legal guidance. Call 561-800-8000 or use our Contact Form to set up a free consultation.