If you were hurt in a motorcycle accident that was not your fault, you need to contact a Syracuse motorcycle accident attorney without delay. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, we thoroughly understand New York motorcycle laws and can help you file an accident claim to recover the damages you deserve for your harm. You can rest assured that we are committed to protecting your rights at every step of the way.
New York has a law that requires motorcycle riders and passengers to wear a helmet regardless of age, licensing, or level of riding experience. Essentially, the law applies to anyone on a motorcycle. The relevant law is found in the Vehicle and Traffic Law at Section 381(6), which states that “it shall be unlawful for any person to operate or ride upon a motorcycle unless he wears a protective helmet.” The helmet must meet federal regulations.
Motorcycle riders are susceptible to catastrophic injuries when they get into an accident. The risk of injuries can greatly increase when individuals on motorcycles are not wearing a helmet. Data from the New York Department of Health reveal that motorcycle helmets are estimated to be 37 percent effective in preventing fatal injuries to motorcycle riders and 42 percent effective for passengers. In addition, helmets are 67 percent effective in preventing brain injuries in crashes; riders without helmets are three times more likely to have a brain injury as a result of a crash when compared to riders wearing helmets.
In New York, when a person causes a preventable injury due to carelessness or recklessness, that person can be responsible for the resulting harm under the theory of negligence. Negligence occurs when reasonable care is not used, leading to injuries or death. Reasonable care refers to how a prudent or sensible person would act in the same or a similar situation. For example, if a car hits a motorcyclist because that car driver failed to check the blind spot properly when changing lanes, the car driver would be liable for any resulting harm. This is because a car driver using reasonable care would have checked the blind spot properly.
It is important to note that New York follows the principle of comparative negligence when determining an award of damages. Under this principle, when a person contributes to or worsens his or her own injuries, the amount of compensation they are able to recover may be decreased by their percentage of responsibility. This is where a motorcyclist not wearing a helmet could be relevant. For instance, the defendant may argue that your failure to wear a helmet led to your head injury. In such cases, your compensation may be limited. We understand how these legal theories can affect your case and will work hard to limit your comparative negligence through the introduction of evidence and expert testimony.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, we can likely help. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, our seasoned Syracuse motorcycle accident lawyers can help you understand your rights and options. We understand that dealing with a motorcycle accident can be stressful, but you can trust that we will make every effort to protect your interests throughout the entire legal process. To discuss your accident in more detail, feel free to call us at 833-200-2000 or contact us online.
More Blog Posts:
Vision Injuries Caused by Accidents in Syracuse, Syracuse Personal Injury Blog, April 30
Traumatic Brain Injury in Syracuse and Throughout New York, Syracuse Personal Injury Blog, April 23, 2018
Coronary Artery Bypass Malpractice in Syracuse, Syracuse Personal Injury Blog, April 16, 2018