The Guide To Motorcycle Accidents in Louisiana
Riding a motorcycle in any state can present challenges. Motorcycle accidents in Louisiana are particualrly common, though. This is because of the poor condition of roads in Louisiana as well as the lack of motorcycle-friendliness of our drivers. But, there are other contributing factors too. Our motorcycle accident attorneys have seen these issues play out over and over again. So, what causes an accident?
The Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
Sudden Stopping – Vehicles following too closely behind a motorcyclist can result in deadly or injurious accidents and it’s a relatively common occurrence.
Motorcycle Maintenance – Many motorcyclists do their own maintenance work or entrust it to someone who is not insured or formally trained. Or, worse still, maintenance is put off until it is too late. As a result, many motorcycle accidents result from poor maintenance.
Motorcycle Manufacturer Defects – Just as cars go through recalls for defects, so do motorcycles. If one of these defects causes an accident, motorcyclists are entitled to compensation.
Dangerous Road Conditions – Especially in Louisiana, dangerous road conditions are going to contribute significantly to the number of motorcycle accidents.
Unsafe Lane Changes – It’s common for vehicles to change lanes in an unsafe manner. This mostly occurs when a driver does not properly check their blind spots. When they hit another vehicle, it does damage but is rarely dangerous. When a motorcycle is involved, there is less protection and this could easily lead to a life-threatening situation.
Vehicle Doors – Whether while driving or parked, opening a vehicle door while a motorcycle is oncoming could lead to an accident. While a motorcycle is trying to park, slinging open a door could easily cause an accident.
Driving Under The Influence – Obviously, driving under the influence causes many accidents for motorcycles and vehicles. The individual who is under the influence while driving is much more likely to be involved in, or at fault for, an accident.
Lane Splitting – In Louisiana, lane splitting is illegal. This is when someone, often a motorcycle, is driving in the area between two lanes. It is especially dangerous for inexperienced riders but is not permitted for anyone.
How Many Motorcycle Accidents In Louisiana?
In 2017, Motorcycles made up only 0.58% of all accidents in Louisiana according to Louisiana Crash Data Reports. That was 1,854 reported accidents, which is surely an under-reporting of the total. Of those, 96 were fatal. That means 8.67% of all fatal accidents involved motorcycles. Essentially, that means riding a motorcycle puts you at an inflated risk of being involved in a fatal accident in Louisiana.
Most of these accidents involve individuals aged between 20 and 35. Surprisingly, more than 86% of motorcyclists involved in accidents were wearing helmets, which may have helped to decrease the injury and fatality rate. Ultimately, though, this does not prevent an inflated rate of serious injury or fatality.
Where Do Motorcycle Accidents Occur?
The vast majority of these accidents are occurring on city/local roads or state roads, contrary to what most people would likely think. While interstates are dangerous due to high speeds, most wrecks do not occur there. Obviously, most of the motorcycle accidents in Louisiana also occur in high population parishes. This means Orleans and East Baton Rouge Parish, with Jefferson, Lafayette, and Calcasieu Parishes rounding out the top 5.
No one should have to lose a loved one or suffer an injury just because of the type of vehicle they drive. That’s true whether the vehicle is a minivan, a motorcycle, or a sports car. If you’ve already been in a motorcycle accident in Louisiana or a loved one has, contact WFCW as soon as possible for legal protection.