According to data collected by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), as of 2016, motorcyclist fatalities occurred 28 times more frequently than other vehicle fatalities. Of course, this is at least in part due to the fact that motorcyclists are not afforded the same protection such as bumpers and airbags that vehicle occupants are. Even a low-speed impact to a motorcyclist can be fatal.
A motorcyclist faced with heavy traffic conditions in Manhattan may be tempted to drive down the middle of the cars to the left and the right on a multi-lane street. This is commonly referred to as splitting lanes. This may be seen as a way to get to your intended destination quicker or even just an adrenaline rush, but is extremely dangerous for many reasons. In heavy traffic, motorists tend to try to get to the lane of traffic they think is moving quicker, and at any time, may turn their vehicle to the left or right to inch into that lane. Motorcyclists splitting lanes may get struck by a vehicle doing so.
Hazardous Road Conditions
While a car or truck may soak up the contact with a pothole or road debris with relative ease, a motorcycle is less likely to do so. Therefore, New York City motorcyclists must be that much more aware of such hazards at all times. If a motorcyclists strike a pothole and are not well-positioned to take the impact, it can cause the rider to be thrown from the bike. Likewise, striking road debris can be equally dangerous, so keeping an eye out of the road ahead is important.
Motorcyclist Injuries in New York
In the state of New York, a motorcycle is not considered a motor vehicle within the meaning of the No-Fault Law. Accordingly, motorcycles are exempt from the definition of “motor vehicle” and a motorcyclist is not a covered person under the New York No-Fault Law. They are therefore not entitled to medical and lost wage benefits. However, motorcyclists injured in motor vehicle accidents are not subject to the “serious injury” threshold under New York No-Fault Law. Therefore, a motorcyclist may file a claim against the driver of a motor vehicle that struck them even for minor injuries that would normally not pass the No-Fault “serious injury” threshold.
NY motorcycle insurance minimums are $25,000 per person injured in any one accident and $50,000 because of the death of one person in one accident; $50,000 for two or more persons injured in any one accident and $100,000 for the deaths of two or more people in one accident. UM/SUM Coverage is also available to owners of motorcycles. An injured motorcyclist’s insurance policy will show the amount of UM/SUM coverage available.
If you have been injured in a crash, seek legal help from New York motorcycle accident attorney Michael J. Redenburg, Esq. P.C. He can assess your claim and hold the responsible parties liable. Schedule a consultation by calling (212) 518-2095 or filling out the online form.