A Pennsylvania news outlet reports that May was a particularly bad month for motorcycle accidents in the western part of the state, which saw six deaths in various accidents, and police reports confirm that at least one of them involved a rider not wearing a helmet. This represents an unfortunate continuation of the trend that has been ongoing since 2003, when the Pennsylvania legislature removed motorcyclists’ legal requirement to wear helmets. Since then, motorcycle accidents have witnessed a 35 percent increase.
The clinical director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s Brain Trauma Research Center claims that failing to wear a helmet greatly increases a motorcyclist’s probability of incurring serious head trauma. Despite this, a majority of Pennsylvania lawmakers did not believe that the government should require motorcyclists to wear helmets.
Motorcycle accidents differ from other motor vehicle accidents in that a motorcycle’s occupants have far less protection. Even minor crashes are likely to cause injury, and high-speed freeway accidents can easily cause fatalities. Most bike accidents involve one of two factors: head-on collisions and automobile left turns. If someone is injured in a motorcycle accident, particularly if another person’s negligence was a contributing factor, he or she is likely to incur overwhelming expenditures as part of his or her recuperation.
In cases of serious injury, a victim’s personal injury attorney must work to determine the accident’s cause in order to attribute liability. Since there are so many potential possible variables involved in any motorcycle accident, this can be a daunting task. In addition, the victim’s lost wages and total future medical expenses may be be calculated as well any damages another party may be responsible for.
Source: Trib LIVE, “Motorcycle deaths in Pennsylvania climb in 10 years since repeal of helmet law,” Aaron Aupperlee, May 25, 2013