In 2007, 5,154 motorcyclists were killed in traffic accidents in the U.S., an increase of 7% from 2006. In addition, over 103,000 motorcyclists were injured. Many of these injuries and deaths could have been prevented if more motorcycle riders and their passengers wore helmets. Wearing a helmet lowers a motorcycle rider's risk of fatal injury by 37%. Despite the documented effectiveness of helmets, many motorcyclists choose not to wear them, especially when state laws don't require helmet use. Currently, less than half of the states require helmet use by riders of all ages. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that helmets saved the lives of 1,784 motorcyclists in 2007. And if all motorcyclists had worn helmets, an additional 800 lives could have been saved.
Per vehicle mile traveled in 2006, motorcyclists were about 35 times more likely than passenger car occupants to die in a motor vehicle traffic crash and 8 times more likely to be injured. While motorcycles made up no more than 3% of all registered vehicles in the U.S., motorcyclists account for 13% of total traffic deaths. In 2007, 36% of all motorcyclists involved in fatal crashes were speeding, compared to 24% for passenger car drivers, 19% for light-truck drivers, and 8% for large-truck drivers.
In California, Motorcyclists are subject to the same speed restrictions as other vehicles. All motorcyclists are required to drive at a speed that is reasonable and prudent. Cal Veh Code § 22350. Generally, any speed in excess of the following speeds is evidence of unreasonable driving:
- 15 mph approaching a school crossing.
- 25 mph in a business or residential district.
- 65 mph in other locations.
In most other locations the Department of Transportation department may determine and declare a prima facie speed limit of 60, 55, 50, 45, 40, 35, 30 or 25 miles per hour, whichever is found most appropriate. Cal Veh Code § 22350 - 22354.
In all motor vehicle accident cases it is essential that measures be taken promptly to preserve evidence, investigate the accident in question, and to enable physicians or other expert witnesses to thoroughly evaluate any injuries. If you or a loved one is a victim of an automobile accident, call Law Offices of Robert Dourian now at 800-790-8856 or CLICK HERE TO SUBMIT A SIMPLE CASE FORM. The initial consultation is free of charge, and if we agree to accept your case, we will work on a contingent fee basis, which means we get paid for our services only if there is a monetary award or recovery of funds. Don't delay! You may have a valid claim and be entitled to compensation for your injuries, but a lawsuit must be filed before the statute of limitations expires.