Motorcyclists and Drunk Drivers
Out of the plethora of bumper stickers that are plastered over the back of trucks, van, and cars it is not uncommon to come across a sticker that is promoting road safety. Those wanting to ensure the safety of motorcyclists have taken to the common practice of using bumper stickers such as “start seeing motorcyclists” or “share the road” to make other drivers more aware of the presence of motorcyclists on the road. Despite the best intentions to make roadways safer for motorcyclists and to encourage safe practices by riders, serious auto accidents involving motorcyclists occur each year.
Commonality of Motorcycle Accidents
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the number of injured or killed motorcyclists though down from previous years still remains high. The was approximately 8 million motorcycles on the road by 2013, but crashes involving motorcycles account for almost 90,000 injuries and 5,000 deaths.1 In fact, reports indicate that motorcyclists are increasingly more at risk then drivers in any other form of transportation. Motorcyclists are five times more likely to be injured and twenty-six times more likely to die per mile traveled than occupants of a passenger car.2
Alcohol and Accidents
Intoxicated drivers are the largest contributing factor to accidents involving motorcyclists. Statistical reports gathered by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicate that the percentage of intoxicated motorcycle riders involved in fatal crashes is greater then the number of intoxicated automobile drivers.3 Driving with a blood alcohol level over 0.08 is considered to be drunk driving by national standards and almost 27 percent of motorcycle riders involved in a fatal accident are reported to be driving while intoxicated.4 The percentage of intoxicated motorcyclists also correlates to other factors that statistically increase the risk for an accident such as a higher percentage of alcohol impaired riders to be over the age of 40, an increased likelihood to speed, a twenty percent decrease in helmet use for alcohol impaired riders, and a four times more likely chance for a night crash to involve drunk driving.5
There is also a significant number of motorcycle accidents which ate traced to drunk driving on the part of another party. Alcohol is involved in almost half of all traffic fatalities regardless if the vehicle at fault is a motorcycle or automobile.6 A drunk driver faces additional difficulties when behind the wheel such as impaired vision, reduced reaction time, and decreased concentration ability.7 Since the majority of motorcycle riding occurs at night when it is dark and bikes are more difficult to see, it is understandable that a drunk driver has an increased chance of hitting a motorcycle which tends to make quicker lane changes and is generally less visible.8
Contact an Experienced St. Louis Motorcycle Accident Attorney for a Free Consultation
If you have been injured during an accident involving alcohol or a motorcycle it is important to discuss the circumstances of your accident with an experienced St. Louis motorcycle accident attorney who can help to determine what claims should be filed and protect your legal rights and interests. To contact an auto accident attorney for a free consultation please feel free to call the The Bruning Law Firm trial attorneys at 314-735-8100.
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If you or someone you care about has been seriously injured in an auto accident, contact The Bruning Law Firm today. We provide the comprehensive, professional legal representation you deserve at a time when you need it most.
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