While exciting to ride, motorcycles come with plenty of dangers riders must make themselves aware of. When motorcycle accidents happen, chemicals like adrenaline may mask injuries and make riders think they emerged from an accident unscathed. Cellino Law wants to make sure you know the most common motorcycle accident injuries, so you and your doctor know what to look for to help you protect your right to compensation from the at-fault party.
Motorcyclists who do not protect their legs may sustain lower extremity injuries. A bike could fall on a person’s leg, or the ankles, calves, knees or feet could become injured. Riders who suffer broken bones may need medical hardware, such as screws, rods or pins, to recover properly. Depending on the severity of the injury, motorcycle accident victims could require multiple surgeries or extensive physical therapy on their road to recovery.
Another common motorcycle crash injury to lower extremities is road rash. A collision’s force may send a rider’s body scraping against unforgiving concrete, which could leave the person with severe burn-like abrasions. Left untreated, road rash injuries may lead to permanent scarring, infections and damaged nerves.
When motorcycle riders throw their arms out to brace themselves after an accident launches them from the bike, they could endure upper extremity trauma. Slamming into the ground may lead to torn rotator cuffs or shoulder injuries. Falls could also break arms, fingers and elbows.
The lungs, heart and other internal organs behind the ribs comprise the human body’s upper trunk, called the thorax. Powerful impacts from motorcycle accidents may trigger internal bleeding or injuries like a lacerated spleen, punctured lung or fractured ribs. One especially sensitive and vulnerable organ during motorcycle accidents is the lungs, which could collapse or become bruised.
Motorcycle riders must wear quality helmets to protect their skulls from head injuries, one of the most severe motorcycle accident injuries. Bikers could suffer mild or severe head injuries, ranging from mild concussions to traumatic brain injuries. Those who hit their heads during motorcycle collisions must have a medical professional examine them, even if they do not feel pain or discomfort after the collision. Head injury symptoms may not appear immediately after an accident, and injured parties may not realize they sustained a head injury. Without proper medical treatment, a head injury could lead to permanent emotional, physical and mental impairments. Examples of various head injuries connected to motorcycle accidents include:
- Brain inflammation
Any of the above may require extensive and expensive long-term medical treatment.
Examples of symptoms associated with these head injuries include:
- Mood swings
- Dilated pupils
- Memory lapse
- Loss of motor skills and coordination
Accident victims who experience any of the above should receive immediate medical attention.
The spleen, liver and other abdominal organs could endure harm in a road accident involving motorcycles. Abdominal organ injuries may cause internal bleeding and infection, which a person may not know about until well after the initial collision, because patients usually have a harder time detecting internal injuries. Symptoms of internal injuries include:
- Low blood pressure
- Abdominal pain
- Blood in urine
Such injuries may kill a person if left untreated.
Neck and Face
Motorcyclists injured in accidents may break their teeth, jaws or nose. Neck and face injuries could lead to permanent disfigurement or scarring. Depending on the direction of the collision’s impact, riders may suffer whiplash. Other common face and neck injuries bikers suffer in accidents include damaged ligaments, muscles, tendons and bones in the neck. Intense neck injuries may lead to complete or partial paralysis or spinal cord damage.
Motorcycle collisions that injure the spine could trigger paralysis ranging from quadriplegia, complete paralysis from the neck down, to paresis, severe muscle weakness and impaired movement. Spinal injuries may also cause sexual dysfunction, respiratory issues and incontinence.
Spinal cord injury patients may stay in the hospital for an extended period, and they could need help from physical therapists and specialists to recover. Patients may endure constant pain and have to take time off work to heal, which reduces their earning capacity.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
Other than prevalent injuries suffered in motorcycle collisions, victims also deserve to educate themselves on the most common reasons for motorcycle accidents. Knowing why an accident happened could help victims and their doctors pinpoint specific injuries and recognize which injury symptoms to look for, which helps build a personal injury case.
Cars Turning Left
Motorists must keep their eyes peeled for motorcycles while making left-hand turns, especially because left turn right-of-way laws require turning vehicles to yield to oncoming traffic. Some reasons drivers cause motorcycle accidents while turning left include driving distracted, speeding and poor visibility. Even then, a person on a bike could bear the blame for such collisions if they speed, use the wrong lane or blast through red lights.
Motorcycles do not have protective steel frames, airbags or seatbelts, making riders especially vulnerable to harm during collisions. A head-on accident could kill or severely injure a biker because of a lack of safety features and the difference in force between motorcycles and standard automobiles. Aside from cars, bikers could also collide with fixed objects such as guardrails, trees and fences.
Some bikers “lane split,” the practice of weaving between slow-moving traffic or stopped vehicles. Lane splitting helps motorcycle riders avoid traffic and save time, but the practice also risks lives and physical safety. Motorists do not expect to see motorcycles blazing past them within arm’s reach, so they may not look carefully before changing lanes or turning suddenly. Without adequate room to maneuver out the way, a biker may have little choice but to absorb the brunt of a collision.
Much like how motorists must keep their eyes peeled for bikers, bikers must keep a constant lookout for road hazards. Railway tracks, irregular road surfaces and road gravel may pose little risk to a vehicle with four wheels, but such hazards could cause a motorcyclist to crash.
Poor Riding Behavior
A biker’s negligence could cause an avoidable accident. No matter the vehicle, drivers and riders should not get behind the wheel or handlebars after consuming alcohol or dangerous substances. No matter how light and powerful a motorcycle is, riders must follow posted speed limits to stay safe, especially young and beginner riders.
Not only do helmets save lives, but state law could require bikers to wear them. The right helmet may help reduce injury severity, turning a potential traumatic brain injury into a slight concussion, for instance.
Schedule Your Consultation Today
If you suffered injuries in a motorcycle accident, think twice about trusting your claim and injuries to an insurance company. Cellino Law has over six decades of legal experience helping motorcycle accident victims and other personal injury victims recover fair compensation from parties responsible for their harm. We offer a free case review, make ourselves available to our clients 24/7, do not charge upfront fees and do not expect our clients to pay unless we win their case. To learn more about how our representatives have more than what it takes to handle your case, call 800-555-5555 or submit an online form.