According to WMBF, motorcyclist Sidney Williams of Raleigh, NC, was killed in Atlantic Beach when a minivan made a left turn in front of him. The impact caused him to be ejected from his motorcycle, he suffered severe trauma, and he later died from his injuries at a local hospital.
A motorcyclist can do everything right, stay alert, drive carefully, and still become the victim of a motorist who is not paying attention and who is not looking for motorcycles on the road.
Causes of Motorcycle Crashes
Motorcycle accidents are often caused by other motorists who are distracted or who are just not looking for motorcycles. Some of the most common types of motorcycle accidents include:
- Motorists who make a left or right turn into the path of an oncoming motorcycle.
- Motorists who change lanes without looking for motorcycles first.
- Motorists who follow a motorcycle too closely.
- Motorists who drive aggressively or who are feeling road rage.
- Distracted drivers who are not paying attention to the road and vehicles around them.
One thing that many accidents have in common is a driver of an automobile or other vehicle failing to yield the right-of-way to a motorcyclist.
Where a failure to follow the rules of the road may result in a fender-bender or small inconvenience for another car or truck on the highway, it could result in a life-changing or a life-ending crash for a motorcyclist.
But, You Assumed the Risk by Getting on a Motorcycle…
No, you did not. Maybe, if you got drunk and crashed your bike. But a law-abiding motorcyclist who is following all the rules of the road has the same right to be on the road as every other motorist. A motorcyclist is not responsible for a motorist who carelessly pulls out in front of them or who changes lanes without looking first.
The driver who is negligent by not paying attention or by not following the traffic laws is responsible for the injuries and the damage caused by their carelessness, regardless of the type of vehicle with which they collide. What happens when a negligent motorist causes the death of a motorcyclist?
Wrongful Death and Motorcycle Crashes
“Wrongful death” is when one person’s negligence, recklessness, or intentional act causes another person’s death. The executor or administrator of the deceased person’s estate must file what is called a “wrongful death action” on behalf of the survivors, which includes damages for:
- The deceased person’s medical bills including hospital bills and surgeries.
- Funeral and burial expenses.
- Pain and suffering.
- Loss of companionship.
- Loss of financial support.
- Any other expenses or losses caused by the crash.
In cases where the other driver’s actions were reckless, willful, or “grossly negligent,” punitive damages can also be awarded to punish the defendant and to deter similar future conduct.
Motorcycle Crash in Myrtle Beach SC?
If your family member was killed in a senseless and preventable motorcycle accident caused by a careless driver, you may not know where to turn. Trying to make funeral arrangements, inform relatives, and figuring out what to do next is a nightmare while you are still in shock and trying to make sense of what has just happened.
One necessary part of the process following a death that was caused by another person is the wrongful death action. As soon as possible, find a personal injury attorney that you trust who can take the financial worries of the personal injury claim off your plate.
If you were involved in a motorcycle accident or if your loved one was killed due to another driver’s carelessness, contact the South Carolina personal injury lawyers at Coastal Law, LLC, today at (843) 488-5000 or fill out our online form to find out how we can help.