Factors and Conditions that Lead to Las Vegas Motorcycle Accidents
When an individual chooses to operate a motorcycle, they – to some degree – accept the fact that there are more risks involved, and that they will be more prone to dangers of the road than any other vehicle out there. From drunk drivers to poor road conditions, motorcyclists face many challenges that put them in harm’s way. At Naqvi Injury Law, our Las Vegas motorcycle accident attorneys understand these unique challenges, and are here to help when these uncontrollable factors get in your way of enjoying the open roads:
Poor Road Conditions
Poor road conditions are the leading cause of motorcycle accidents in Las Vegas. Though they are completely unavoidable, understanding the unique conditions that commonly lead to motorcycle accidents in Las Vegas may help motorcyclists anticipate the dangers and better prepare themselves before heading out for a ride. Road conditions that commonly cause Las Vegas motorcycle accidents include:
- Bad weather, including fog, heavy winds, ice, rain, and snow;
- Surfaces with poor tractions, including gravel, manhole covers, mud, leaves, oil, and wet pavement;
- Sudden, unexpected obstacles, including animals, debris, litter, and pedestrians; and
- Uneven or damaged surfaces, such as broken or rough pavement, bumps, holes, and ruts.
While many causes of motorcycle accidents in Las Vegas are unavoidable, there are just as many that are avoidable. Human error accounts for a large number of car accidents on roadways these days, and motorcyclists are not immune. Below are the top five causes of motorcycle accidents due to human error in Las Vegas:
- Speeding:Speeding on or around a motorcyclist is especially dangerous, because not only does it decrease the likelihood that the motorcyclist will be seen in a timely enough manner to prevent collision, but when a collision does occur, the force of impact will be that much greater, leading much more severe injuries had one or both parties not been speeding.
- Drunk Driving:26 percent of motorcyclists involved in motorcycle fatalities in 2011 had a BAC of .08 percent or greater. In Las Vegas, drunk driving is a major concern for authorities, especially when the drunk driver is a motorcyclist. This is because alcohol can impair judgment, vision, reaction time, and physical capabilities, all of which are imperative to have when getting onto the back of a motorcycle.
- Distracted Driving:Texting, eating, smoking – distracted driving includes any activity that takes one’s mind, eyes, and hands away from the act of driving. Distracted driving is becoming the leading cause of car accidents nationwide, so it is important that motorcyclists pay extra attention to the vehicles around them, and make sure that all drivers know they are there.
- Texting While Driving:While this could fall under the category of “distracted driving,” texting while driving deserves its own bullet point. Texting takes all three forms of a driver’s attention away from the road – visual, cognitive, and manual – and so is therefore especially dangerous to Las Vegas motorcyclists.
- Common Traffic Violations:From running a stop sign to failure to yield, even the smallest traffic violation can lead to serious injuries or even fatalities for a motorcycle driver. Because of this, it is extremely important that motorcyclists remain extra alert and aware of all drivers around them, to follow all rules of the road, and to compensate for drivers that fail to follow the rules of the road.
Rider Inexperience & Failure to Meet Requirements
Finally, rider inexperience is a huge concern for Las Vegas authorities. Unfortunately, one out of every four motorcycle fatalities involved a rider who did not hold a valid Las Vegas motorcycle license, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. While many individuals think that riding a motorcycle is as simple as riding a bike, and that the rules for motorcyclists on the road are the same for cars and trucks, they would be mistaken. The motorcycle safety courses that one is required to take before taking their bike out on the road provide safety tips and roadway rules meant to better protect both motorcyclists and other vehicles; however, it is impossible to know of these safety measures if one fails to take the required courses.
Additionally, many riders – partially because they did not take the mandatory motorcycle licensure or safety courses provided by the state of Nevada – fail to meet all of the mandatory equipment requirements for riding a bike out on the roadways. Equipment requirements include:
- Front and rear brakes;
- Front and rear electric turn signals;
- Front and back wheel fenders;
- Adjustable footrests for passengers;
- Handlebars that are positioned at a height that ensures handgrips are below shoulder level;
- At least one headlight for daytime and nighttime use, but no more than two;
- Rearview mirrors on each handlebar;
- At least one reflector that is rear-mounted and visible in low beam lights from at least 300 feet away;
- Brake lights that are visible during both day and night from at least 300 feet away; and
- A taillight that is visible during both day and night from at least 500 feet away.
Again, many motorcyclists do not meet these safety requirements because they do not receive proper licensure or take the recommended safety courses before hitting the open road. At Naqvi Injury Law, our Las Vegas motorcycle accident lawyers encourage each of our clients to take the proper training courses and programs before get back behind the handlebars of a motorcycle – even if they have already taken the courses.