About Motorcycle Accidents
Pennsylvania motorcycle accident law firm focused on accident victims’ needs
Motorcyclists in Johnstown, Altoona, DuBois and other communities throughout Western and Central Pennsylvania take riding seriously. Some riders belong to motorcycle clubs. Others attend rallies like Johnstown’s Thunder in the Valley. Many more regularly ride to work or on weekends on Pennsylvania’s beautiful back roads.
For you and many others, riding a motorcycle is probably more than just a way to get around. It’s a way of life. That’s why motorcycle accidents can be so devastating. In a split second, your entire life can change forever due to a serious motorcycle crash.
At Marcus & Mack, we also take motorcycle accidents seriously. We understand that a motorcycle accident can turn your world upside down. We also know that most auto accidents involving motorcycles are not the riders fault. Instead, other drivers often make careless or reckless choices.
Why should I contact a lawyer after my motorcycle accident?
For more than 38 years, Marcus & Mack has been helping motorcycle accident victims get the compensation they rightfully deserve for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering and other expenses. Our experienced trial attorneys have successfully represented thousands of seriously injured clients across Pennsylvania.
We’re familiar with many important issues associated with motorcycle accidents. Learn more about these topics in the sections listed below:
- Top Injuries in Motorcycle Accidents
- Top Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
- FAQs for Motorcycle Accident Lawyers
If you or a loved one has suffered serious injury or wrongful death in a motorcycle collision, don’t wait to take legal action. Contact us immediately. We understand the law and know how to get results. Call (800) 488-0338.
Motorcyclists have little protection in accidents involving cars or trucks. As a result, motorcycle accident injuries can often be severe, life-threatening or even fatal in certain circumstances. In 2013, for example, a total of 181 people died in motorcycle accidents in Pennsylvania – 172 drivers and 9 passengers, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Statistics show total motorcycle crashes declined 14 percent from 2012. There were 3,985 total crashes in 2012 and 3,427 crashes in 2013.
Some of the most common motorcycle accident injuries we regularly encounter at Marcus & Mack include:
- Road rash – This type of injury often involves a motorcyclist sliding across the pavement and scraping exposed skin on the ground. Such an injury can result in permanent skin damage or nerve damage. Without proper medical treatment, infections and skin irritation can also occur.
- Head injuries – Traumatic brain injuries ranging from concussions to severe brain damage and even death frequently are sustained when a motorcyclist collides with another vehicle. Even riders wearing helmets, which are required by law for all motorcyclists in Pennsylvania under 21 years old, sometimes sustain serious head injuries.
- Broken bones – Bone fractures and breaks in the face, hands, arms and legs often occur. Compound fractures and multiple broken bones are also common.
- Hand and arm injuries – Motorcyclists’ exposed hands and arms often bear the brunt of many accidents. In particular, some riders sustain an injury known as “biker’s arm,” in which a motorcyclist lands on the ground arms first, causing permanent nerve damage.
- Leg injuries – Injuries to the lower extremities are among the most common motorcycle crash injuries. These injuries often happen because motorcyclists’ legs are not protected. By comparison, drivers and passengers in cars and trucks have a steel shell as well as airbags and other safety features. Common leg injuries include cuts, bruises and broken bones. In certain extreme cases, motorcyclists have to have their legs amputated or permanently lose the use of their legs in an accident.
- Inattentive drivers – A driver simply saying he/she didn’t see you or another motorcyclist isn’t an excuse. Drivers have an obligation to look carefully before turning or changing lanes. Otherwise, accidents can easily happen.
- Distracted drivers – Texting while driving, talking on a cellphone and eating while driving are among the most common causes of distracted driving accidents.
- Speeding drivers – When drivers exceed the speed limit, they often don’t have the time or space to stop safely. As a result, speeding trucks and cars sometimes crash into motorcyclists.
- Reckless drivers – Weaving between vehicles, changing lanes without warning and tailgating – these are some of the most common examples of reckless driving that result in serious accidents.
What should I do if I’m involved in a motorcycle accident?
Because insurance companies know there’s an inherent bias against motorcyclists in accidents, it’s critical to contact an attorney as soon as possible. If you can’t meet with your attorney immediately, we urge you not to admit fault or make any written or recorded statements to an insurance company. If you are able to do so, take photos of the accident scene, including damage to your bike and your injuries. Seek immediate medical help and keep copies of your medical records or bills. Keep a journal of your accident-related expenses and also describe the impact of the accident on your life (i.e., severity of pain, missed time from work, loss of enjoyment of hobbies or activities in life, etc.).
What if the other driver doesn’t have insurance?
Accidents involving uninsured drivers can be complicated, but you may be able to recover compensation from your own policy. Your accident should be covered if you have uninsured motorist coverage. Under Pennsylvania law, you might also be entitled to compensation from your health insurance policy for your accident. However, there’s no guarantee that you will be fully compensated for the true cost of your accident. That’s why it’s critical that you have an aggressive attorney working for you to negotiate directly with insurance companies.
What if the other driver leaves the scene of the accident?
You may be able to collect from your own insurance policy if you are a victim of a hit-and-run motorcycle accident. If the hit-and-run driver is found, he or she likely will face criminal charges. You also may be able to pursue punitive damages from the driver. Such damages are designed to punish the at-fault driver and serve as a warning to other drivers from engaging in similar bad conduct.
Can I file a motorcycle accident lawsuit?
Most motorcycle accident claims settle out of court, but in some cases filing a lawsuit is the best option. We prepare every case as if it’s going to be heard by a judge and jury. Our experience shows us that often our threat to file a lawsuit is enough to motivate insurance companies to do the right thing and compensate you and your family.
Why should I hire Marcus & Mack to handle my motorcycle accident?
Insurance companies know that many jurors are biased against motorcycle riders. They use this unfair perception against injured riders and families who lost loved ones in accidents. If you suffered serious injuries or lost a loved one in a motorcycle wreck, you may struggle on your own to get a fair settlement from the insurance company. Our aggressive accident attorneys have nearly 100 years of combined experience. We have a comprehensive understanding of Pennsylvania’s traffic laws and know what evidence to look for after an accident. We often reach out to experts in accident reconstruction as well as medical professionals who can advocate on your behalf. Our careful, detail-oriented approach enables us to negotiate effectively with insurance companies or to present a compelling case before a judge and jury.