There’s nothing quite like the feeling of freedom and exhilaration you get when you’re riding your motorcycle. You’re cruising along, enjoying the scenery, when suddenly you hit a hole in the road that you didn’t see until it was too late. You go one way, your bike goes the other, and now all you can see are dollar signs.
You’re potentially facing medical expenses for your injuries, loss of income while you recover, and long-term therapy, not to mention the cost of fixing your motorcycle.
Motorcycle riders are at serious risk when they encounter road defects like potholes, uneven roadways, and other dangers. Cities and municipalities need to make sure that roads are free of hazards and defects, but they don’t always live up to their responsibility.
In New York, you can file a lawsuit against an individual whose negligence causes a motorcycle accident that injures you. But what if the accident was caused not by negligence on the part of a private citizen but instead on the part of the government? You can sue the city, municipality, or state, but it’s a complex process with specific steps and a tight deadline for filing.
Instead of trying to pursue compensation yourself, turn to an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer in New York who has handled and won cases involving road defects. They can be your best ally, answering your questions, gathering evidence and building a case, filing a lawsuit, staying on top of deadlines, and representing you in court.
Contact the New York motorcycle accident attorneys at Hach & Rose, LLP to learn what your options are and how we can help you recover fair compensation for your personal injuries and property damages. Call (212) 779-0057 today for a free case evaluation.
Motorcycle Accidents Cause Higher Rates of Injuries and Fatalities Than Car Accidents
Riding a motorcycle is more dangerous than driving a passenger vehicle. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has found that, compared to passenger vehicle occupants, motorcyclists are four times likelier to be injured and 28 times likelier to be killed in a collision. Even when the rider is wearing a helmet and following well established traffic safety precautions, they are still at a distinct disadvantage because of the following reasons:
- Motorcyclists ride out in the open, unprotected by an enclosure like the steel frame of a car.
- Motorcycles lack protective devices such as seat belts and airbags.
- Motorcycles take up less space on the road and are more difficult for other drivers to see.
- Motorcycles are more vulnerable to adverse road conditions because they are less stable than cars.
A recent vehicle crash statistics report published by New York’s Institute for Traffic Safety Management and Research revealed that there were 372,159 vehicle crashes across the state in 2021, including 4,929 motorcycle crashes. These crashes led to:
- 201 fatalities
- 3,719 non-fatal injuries
Motorcycle Accidents Caused by Individuals
Individual drivers can cause motorcycle accidents in myriad ways, including:
- Backing their car out of their driveway without looking
- Failing to stop at a stop sign
- Weaving through traffic
- Neglecting to check or signal before merging
Drivers who cause motorcycle accidents are responsible for paying for the consequences. Usually, this compensation is paid out by their liability insurance provider, paying for the victim’s accident-related expenses and other losses.
But what if your accident wasn’t caused by someone else but by a road defect? Who’s responsible then?
Motorcycle Accidents Caused by Road Defects
Accidents can be caused by flawed road design, poor or no maintenance, or a combination of factors, including:
- Insufficient lighting
- Road damage (potholes, cracks, etc.)
- Gravel or other debris
- Lack of or insufficient snow removal
- No signage to warn of construction hazards, sharp turns, etc.
- Narrow lanes
- Broken or poorly timed traffic lights
- Overgrown vegetation that blocks drivers’ view of stop signs or other warnings
If you sustained personal injuries in a motorcycle accident caused by road defects, you may be entitled to compensation for a variety of losses, including:
- Medical expenses – You can seek to recover costs for doctor or emergency room visits, hospitalization, surgery, physical therapy, and any ongoing treatment you may require.
- Lost wages – If your injuries prevent you from working, you can seek compensation for lost income and reduced future earning capacity.
- Pain and suffering – You may be entitled to compensation for physical pain, emotional distress, and the overall impact of the accident on your quality of life.
- Property damage – You can submit a claim for the repair or replacement costs of any items damaged in the accident, such as eyeglasses, dentures, cell phones, watches, and laptop computers.
When you discuss your case with an experienced New York motorcycle accident lawyer, you’ll be able to tell them about your injuries, losses, and expenses. This will help them calculate how much to seek in compensation.
Who Is Responsible for Road Defects in New York?
Roadway design, maintenance, and repairs may be the responsibility of the city, town, municipality, or state, depending on where the accident occurred and on what type of road. If you need to file a claim with one of these government entities, state law says you must notify it of your intent to file within 90 days of the occurrence.
An experienced New York motorcycle accident attorney can identify which entity or entities are responsible and who you should seek compensation from.
How Our New York Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Can Help You
The attorneys at Hach & Rose, LLP can help you at every step of the legal process, including:
- Conducting a thorough investigation of the accident by reviewing documentation and collecting physical evidence at the scene of the accident.
- Determining which governmental entity knew of the hazard but failed to repair it
- Timely notifying the government entity of your intent to file a claim, then preparing and filing it on your behalf
- Negotiating a settlement or, if none can be reached, representing you in court
Were you hurt in a motorcycle accident in New York because of unsafe road conditions? If so, you could be entitled to compensation – but pursuing it can be challenging, and you have only a short window in which to file.
The experienced New York motorcycle accident attorneys at Hach & Rose, LLP can help you understand your legal options so you can make an informed decision about pursuing compensation. Call us at (212) 779-0057 or contact us using our online form for a free consultation today.