Our South Carolina Motor Vehicle Accidents Law blog recently remarked on the occasion of Motorcycle Awareness Month, which took place during the month of May. The American Motorcyclist Association devotes its efforts every May to raising drivers' awareness of motorcycles on the road, and to raising everyone's awareness of the devastating nature of motorcycle accident injuries. Unfortunately, the month ended with a fatal motorcycle accident that made headlines.
The accident occurred right here in Orangeburg. A car was heading down Coach Road at around 10 p.m. on a Sunday evening. When the driver attempted to make a left turn, the car ran into a motorcycle. Although the accident victim was wearing a helmet, the collision proved fatal to the cyclist.
Authorities are investigating this accident further, but there are a few details that will prove interesting to any Orangeburg residents who have been injured or have lost a loved one in a motorcycle accident. One is that the accident occurred at night. Car and truck drivers often fail to pay adequate attention to motorcycles or other vehicles smaller than the one they are driving, and the dark of night may further lead an inattentive or otherwise negligent driver to assume there are no other vehicles nearby.
The other instructive detail in this story is the fact that a motorcycle helmet - while serving as essential for protection from concussions, brain injuries and other serious injuries - is still slim protection compared to what a car or truck driver has in a regular passenger vehicle. Because these accidents so often prove fatal to the cyclist, families of riders who fall victim to an accident may need to consider the possibility of a wrongful death action. This may be a way in which they can seek compensation in order to prevent medical bills, funeral expenses, lost wages and other financial burdens from becoming overwhelming in their grief.
Springtime in South Carolina is a beautiful time to be out on the open roads. But when a negligent car or truck driver's actions turn a peaceful ride into a nightmare, motorcyclists and their families may wish to seek the assistance of a legal professional in order to understand their legal rights and options.
Source: ABC News 4 Charleston, "Motorcycle crash leaves one dead," May 20, 2013