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Motorcycle Crash Cases

Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Addresses Motorcycle Crash Cases
Brien Roche

On September 7, 2020 a motorcycle rider was killed.  The motorcycle was actually a dirt bike.  The collision occurred in Prince George’s County, MD.  It was at approximately 7:40 p.m. on September 7, 2020.  It was at the intersection of Silver Hill Road and Brooks Drive in Suitland, MD.  The motorcycle rider was killed.  He was identified as Lindsey Robinson, 36 of the District of Columbia.  

The driver of the car and a passenger were not hurt.  

Robinson was heading westbound on Silver Hill Road.  The driver of the car was coming in the opposite direction. The two vehicles collided at the intersection.  It was not immediately clear as to what the cause of the crash was. 

Motorcycle accident claims require prompt investigation. Motorcycle riding is not without risks. It has been many years since I have ridden a motorcycle but in my younger days I had extensive experience riding motorcycles. I understand the risks. I also understand that some drivers do not maintain a proper lookout for motorcycles. My background extends not only to the courtroom in terms of trying motorcycle injury cases but also in terms of having been a motorcyclist.

What to do if involved in a motorcycle crash:

  • Keep the damaged bike in a safe place.
  • Maintain all of the maintenance and repair manuals.
  • Do not fix or otherwise adjust the damaged bike.
  • Keep in mind that your bike may become an item of proof if the case has to be tried.

Motorcycle Accident Injuries on the Rise

Ridership in this country has increased over the last many years.  Likewise, the number of injuries and deaths have increased.  Many of these are caused by unsafe bikes.  That lack of safety can come in several different respects.  It may be due to throttle problems, helmet defects or brake system deficiencies to mention a few.  With most types of motorcycle defect claims there is probably going to be a need for a riding expert to explain what happens when that type of defect exists. The expert will need to explain how the defect caused the rider to lose control.  Call, or contact us for a free consult.

In helmet defect cases the focus may be on the lack of proper lining in the helmet. This leaves part of the head unprotected. The failure of the helmet to properly protect the most vulnerable part of the skull is the defect.  The mere fact that a helmet is stamped as being approved by the U.S. Department of Transportation does not mean it is safe. It needs to be confirmed that indeed the helmet has been approved by the U.S.

There has been some dispute over the last few years about whether or not motorcycle brakes should have antilock braking systems.  Many bikes do.  Data produced by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety suggests that bikes with an ABS equipped system are safer than bikes without one.

Motorcycle and Deer Collisions

Motorcycle deer collisions in the D.C. area have taken their toll on motorcyclists.  The Washington Post reports on October 9, 2012 that seven of the eight people that have been killed in collisions with deer over a three-year period in Maryland and Virginia were motorcycle riders.  AAA also reports that 70 percent of deer fatal crashes involve motorcycles.

Motorcycle accidents involving deer are more likely in the fall. This is the mating season for the deer.  During that time of the year they tend to be on the move.  In the D.C. area deer are a problem because of the lack of any predators to control the numbers. There are also severe limits on hunting to thin the herd.

The Washington Post reports that each year there are about 80,000 collisions with deer in the Washington region.  During the year 2010 there were 403 people killed nationwide in collisions with deer.  Motorcyclists, aside from all of the other hazards, need to be alert in areas where deer may be lurking by the road.

Jury Selection in Motorcycle Crash Cases

In handling any motorcycle accident case you need to recognize that there is a segment of the public that views motorcyclists as high risk takers. Therefore they assume the risk of motorcycle riding.  That needs to be dealt with up front in terms of picking a jury. You need to identify those people in the jury panel that are high risk takers versus others who are not risk takers. Getting all of the jurors to express candid feelings about motorcycle riders is a must.  You need to have a riding expert explain the safety functions of motorcycle equipment. He needs to explain how the injured party complied with good riding practices. This is basic to winning the case.

If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident, contact us.  Brien Roche has been serving the motorcycle accident litigation needs of the Fairfax, Virginia and D.C. area clients for over forty years.

See motorcycles on this site for a review of Virginia case law. See also the page on Wikipedia for motorcycle safety.


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