Warmer weather is finally in the forecast. More importantly, no more snow! We hope. With temperatures rising, more and more motorcycle owners will be hitting the roads to enjoy the freedom that’s generally associated with these muscle machines. While motorcycles are fun, they can be quite risky. A chance for injury is always lurking.
In our weekly blog, we wanted to share some need-to-know information about motorcycle accidents in Pennsylvania, along with some safety tips motorcyclists should keep in mind when they are riding around this spring.
According to the most recent reports from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT), there were 192 motorcycle accident fatalities in 2016; along with 3,321 related injuries. The most recent national statistic regarding motorcycle accident fatalities is 4,295 deaths in 2014 alone. That same year, 92,000 cyclists suffered injuries as a result of an accident. In fact, fatalities of motorcycle accidents have been generally trending upward in the most recent years even though the state has strict laws regarding helmet usage.
Why is that important? Because motorcycle accidents are one of the leading causes of severe head injuries. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), “motorcyclist fatalities occurred 26 times more frequently than passenger car occupant fatalities in traffic crashes.” The motorcyclist’s head, helmet or not, tends to be the first body part to make contact with the ground after an accident.
When it comes to legal protection, the Keystone State is lacking. Pennsylvania’s helmet law, which was enacted in 2003, states any cyclist who’s licensed to operate a motorcycle for two full years isn’t required to wear a helmet. If you are under 21, a helmet is mandatory. Fellerman & Ciarimboli can protect you from a faulty motorcycle causing you pain and suffering, but we can’t protect you from not wearing your helmet. Be smart.
You can never be too careful when you take your bike out for the first ride of the season. Here are a few tips to keep in mind before you hit the road:
- Before taking out your motorcycle, make a quick checklist to see if all of your bike’s equipment is in tip-top shape
- Regardless of the state’s law, we recommend that all cyclists wear a helmet when traveling. It can save your life
- The speed limit isn’t a recommendation, it’s the law. Don’t speed!
- Use your bike’s turn signals to keep drivers alert for your next move. Consider using hand signals as well, in case other drivers can’t see your turn signal
- Wear the proper clothing like boots and gloves. Flip-flops? Think twice
- A training course doesn’t hurt. You never know when you can learn something new
- Don’t text and drive!
- Don’t drink and drive!
Contact Fellerman & Ciarimboli
If you get into a motorcycle accident, you will need an experienced motorcycle accident attorney on your side. Time is of the essence, so don’t hesitate to contact Fellerman & Ciarimboli today.
With more than 40 years of combined experience, the personal injury attorneys at Fellerman & Ciarimboli strive to provide the best service to clients in Philadelphia, Northeast Pennsylvania, and throughout the Keystone State.