Motorcycle Accident Liability
In a matter of seconds your motorcycle is a twisted piece of metal and you are lying on the road bruised, battered and bloody- you were just in a motorcycle accident and now the important question to ask is who can be held liable? If you have sustained serious injuries in a motorcycle crash, it is important that you get a personal injury attorney on your side immediately, as a variety of parties could be responsible.
The Other Driver
If a driver was driving too fast, was drunk, failed to yield the right of way or made dangerous lane changes, he/she could be held liable for the crash. Also, if a driver was distracted- such as texting while driving- he/she could be responsible for the collision. In two-thirds of motorcycle accidents involving another vehicle, the driver of the other vehicle violated the motorcyclist's right of way.
If a road is worn or ill-maintained and that caused or contributed to your accident, there is a possibility you could file a lawsuit against the city. Three common problems that can cause motorcycle accidents include potholes, railroad tracks and sewer grates. How do you know if you can file a lawsuit against your city? For example, if a sewer grate bars went in the same direction as traffic and your motorcycle's tires got stuck in the grate, you could argue that this is a hazard, there are remedies for this problem and that because your city did not eliminate this danger, city officials are responsible for the damages you sustained (see Dangerous Road Conditions for more information).
Your Motorcycle's Manufacturer
When a motorcycle is deemed dangerous, the manufacturer or National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will often recall the bike. Unsafemotorcycles.com informs riders that the following could point to a motorcycle defect:
- Your tires malfunction- even though they are new
- Your motorcycle wobbled or made strange noises before a crash occurred
- Your motorcycle malfunctioned "for no reason"
- Your crash had no apparent cause- good weather, no driver impairment, no excessive speed, etc.
The Lemon Law
If you suspect that defective tires, brakes or safety features caused your accident, you should contact a personal injury attorney to learn more about filing a claim. If a motorcycle was "unreasonably and dangerously" designed or if a defect occurred during manufacturing, shipping or distribution, you can hold a company liable. In Texas, the Lemon Law covers new motorcycles. If your motorcycle is less than two years old or up to two years old or if your mileage is 24,000 or less, you could file a claim if one of the following is true:
- Your motorcycle did not conform to the manufacturer's express warranty
- Your motorcycle had substantial defects affecting the use, safety and value of the motorcycle
- If your motorcycle was taken in four times for the same problem or has been out of service for a total of 30 days, providing that two repair attempts were made within the first year after delivery or 12,000 miles
- The manufacturer of your motorcycle was notified in writing about the defect before your warranty expires and you gave the manufacturer an opportunity to repair the problem
A good way to determine who was responsible for your motorcycle accident is to take notes, document your injuries and losses, record conversations, take pictures of the accident and survey the scene of the accident again and locate witnesses. If you were involved in a serious motorcycle crash, most likely you sustained severe injuries from broken bones and brain injuries to road rash, disfigurement or spinal cord injuries. If another person's carelessness was at fault, contact a Personal Injury Attorney at Zinda Law Group today to fight for the damages you deserve!