Good weather can cause motorcyclists to hit the road. Often, there are many motorcyclists on the road in Syracuse and Rochester. However, motorcycle accidents may also surge in good weather. Since there is no buffer between the motorcyclist and other vehicles or the pavement, the injuries are likely to be catastrophic and may even be fatal. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano, our experienced Syracuse motorcycle accident lawyers may be able to represent you if you were injured or a loved one was killed in a motorcycle crash.Pursuing Compensation for a Motorcycle Accident
Other drivers often cause motorcycle accidents. Many drivers of larger passenger vehicles claim later that they could not see a motorcyclist with whom they were sharing a road. Sometimes it is because the motorcycle is traveling in a blind spot, but sometimes the driver is simply distracted and, not expecting to see a motorcycle, fails to see it. A driver may cut off a rider at an intersection or hit them while making a simple lane change.
If you are injured in a motorcycle crash, a motorcycle accident attorney in the Syracuse area may be able to help you recover damages by proving the defendant's duty of care, a breach of the duty of care, actual and proximate causation, and actual damages. A breach of the duty of care may occur under a wide range of circumstances. A driver of a larger vehicle who is texting or speeding, for example, may have breached the duty to use reasonable care while on the road.
In many cases, the defendant will argue that a rider’s own negligence contributed to his or her injuries. Under the rule of comparative negligence, the jury will examine the evidence and arguments, determine damages, and assign percentages of fault. When somebody contributes to or worsens their own injuries, the compensation that they can recover will be reduced by their percentage of fault. For example, if the total damages are $200,000, and you are found 50% at fault, while the defendant is also found 50% at fault, you may be able to recover $100,000 from the defendant.
There is a New York law requiring riders and their passengers to wear a helmet, regardless of how experienced they are on a motorcycle. It is illegal under Vehicle and Traffic Law section 381(6) for anybody to operate or ride a motorcycle without a protective helmet that abides by federal motor vehicle safety standards. The risks of catastrophic injuries go up if a biker does not wear a helmet. According to the New York Department of Health, motorcycle helmets are considered 37% effective in preventing fatal injuries to riders. If you do not wear a helmet, and you suffer injuries such as traumatic brain injuries or skull fractures, your Syracuse motorcycle accident attorney may need to fight back against a defendant who is arguing that you should not recover your damages for those injuries.
Injuries that may be suffered by a motorcyclist include spinal cord damage, traumatic brain injuries, paralysis, road rash, and broken bones. The severity and nature of the injuries will determine the damages that you can recover. Damages may include both economic and noneconomic losses. Economic losses are tangible losses, such as medical bills, lost income, replacement services, and out-of-pocket costs. For example, if you suffer quadriplegia in a motorcycle accident and need to hire a housekeeper because you are no longer able to take care of the household, you may be able to recover the cost of hiring the housekeeper. Noneconomic damages that you may be able to recover include pain and suffering, mental anguish, loss of enjoyment, and loss of consortium.Hire a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer in the Syracuse Area
If you have been struck by a careless driver while riding a motorcycle, our law firm may be able to help you recover damages from the responsible parties. DeFrancisco & Falgiatano represents injured riders and their families in Syracuse, Rochester, Lyons, Ithaca, Cooperstown, Oswego, Canandaigua, Utica, Wampsville, Oneida, Lowville, Watertown, Herkimer, Delhi, Cortland, Norwich, Elmira, Auburn, and Binghamton. Call us at 315-479-9000 or contact us via our online form.