When a Car Hits a Motorcycle from the Rear
Rear-end collisions are the most prevalent type of motor vehicle accident. The National Highway Safety Transportation Administration (NHTSA) estimates there are about 2.5 million rear-end collisions in the US each year, or one every 8 seconds.
Motorcycles are equally at risk for rear-end accidents. But unlike most rear-end collisions involving passenger cars that may only result in property damage and no or slight injuries, a motorcycle rider is exposed to catastrophic injuries from being struck from the rear by a motor vehicle at any speed.
Factors in Rear-End Accidents
Most rear-end accidents occur at red lights or in traffic. An approaching motorist is either proceeding too fast to stop in time or is inattentive to the stopped motorcycle in front of him. At times, a motorist who safely stopped behind a motorcycle is struck in its rear from another motorist who failed to stop in time, sending the stopped car into the rear of the motorcycle.
Inattentiveness usually results from intoxicated or distracted driving. Use of cell phones while driving is a growing problem in the US. An Erie insurance poll found that one-third of all drivers reportedly texted while driving, though that figure may be low. The use of cell phones while driving is on the increase as more people gain access to smartphones.
Injuries from a Rear-End Collision
In many rear-end accidents involving passenger cars, a rear-end collision at a low or moderate speed generally results in a soft tissue injury to the muscles, tissues, and tendons in the neck or back. A motorcyclist who is struck from the rear can cause the rear wheel to lift up and flip the rider forward into the car in front of him or to the pavement. If it is a high-speed collision, the car may even run over the fallen rider. Your injuries may include:
- Facial fractures
- Broken teeth
- Broken or shattered bones
- Traumatic brain injury
- Severe lacerations
- Spinal cord injuries
- Neurological injuries
A catastrophic injury is any serious injury that results in permanent and life-altering injuries such as paralysis or cognitive changes that render you permanently disabled and unable to work.
You are entitled to compensation for any injury you sustain if caused by the reckless, wrongful or negligent conduct of another person or entity. Damages in a catastrophic injury case may include:
- Past and future wage losses
- Past and future medical costs
- Pain and anguish
- Diminished quality of life
- Permanent disability
Always consult an experienced attorney who has handled motorcycle and catastrophic injury cases so that you can obtain the compensation needed.