Motorcycle accidents present dangers not present in other kinds of vehicular accidents. Motorcycles travel much faster than bicycles but offer no protection from a collision. Driver’s bodies are exposed to the collision and can be crushed between their motorcycle and the other vehicle. The combined speed of the collision can be as much as 120 mph which is sufficient to leave a person’s body virtually liquefied on the road. In any event, motorcycle accidents often result in the loss of limb or the loss of life.
One of the most dangerous, and most appealing riding techniques employed by motorcycle riders in California is known as “lane splitting” where a motorcycle rides between lanes of slow moving traffic at a high rate of speed. While this is legal in California, it can be extremely dangerous to the rider because the driver of a vehicle in the slow moving traffic may attempt to change lanes as the rider approaches, never aware that a motorcycle is splitting the lanes behind them.
The rider can be caught off guard and unable to compensate or avoid the collision. Assuming the rider is traveling at a reasonable speed for the flow of traffic, the liability for this kind of accident falls on the driver of the other vehicle for their failure to change lanes safely.
The California Highway Patrol may or may not cite the driver of the vehicle. Regardless of the blame placed by the CHP, if the case is properly presented to a jury, the rider of the motorcycle can still win.
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