One of the most common causes of motorcycle crashes occurs when other motorists turning left do not yield the right of way, turning into the path of a motorcycle. Even though these impacts tend to happen at slower speeds, they can still cause serious injuries to the motorcyclist, who may be going through the intersection at the posted speed and has no protection between himself and the vehicle hitting him.
How Motorists’ Mistakes While Turning Left Cause Crashes With Motorcycles
Turning left should be a relatively safe driving maneuver, since motorists practice it so many times daily when driving. Unfortunately, when drivers engage in these unsafe driving practices, they can cause crashes with innocent bikers:
- Not being in the correct lane. A motorist always needs to be certain he is in the left-turn lane before turning left.
- Not using a turn signal. A motorist should always use a turn signal to warn other motorists—including motorcycle riders—that he is turning. He should also slow down as he approaches the intersection even if he doesn’t have to stop.
- Jumping lanes. When turning, the driver should stay in his lane and not make an unsafe last minute lane change.
- Not remaining idle until it is safe to proceed. A driver must not proceed to turn until all pedestrians and oncoming vehicles and motorcycles are clear.
- Not looking before proceeding. A driver needs to look to the left and right and through his rear mirrors before turning, so he knows what vehicles are around him and what they are doing.
- Speeding to or through a left-turn signal. Drivers who speed to get to a left-turn signal before it becomes red can easily cause crashes with motorcyclists not expecting this unsafe driving.
When another motorist engages in these unsafe practices when turning left, a biker only has a few seconds to react—not enough time to avoid the crash. A motorcyclist hit in this type of collision can suffer life-threatening injuries, including brain damage, spinal cord injuries, and internal organ damage. But he may be able to recover compensation for his medical bills, lost wages, and more from the driver who caused the accident.
Were you hit by another driver? It is important to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney who can advise you on your legal options and the compensation you could be entitled to. Call us at (817) 380-4888 for a free consultation to learn how we can help you.