According to Mississippi's 2022 report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, an average of 44 motorcyclists are killed every year in motorcycle crashes in Mississippi (between years 2017-2021). 62 motorcyclists died in crashes in 2020 and 38 in 2021. Motorcyclists are 24 times more likely to die in an accident than people in passenger cars. Many motorcycle crashes are the result of other drivers’ negligence, such as failing to pay attention to motorcycles on the road.
If you were injured in a motorcycle accident in Jackson, MS, Richard Schwartz & Associates Injury Lawyers, P.A. is here to help you receive fair compensation for your injuries. We have recovered millions on behalf of accident victims and are prepared to handle your case. Contact us online today or give us a call at 601-988-8888 for a FREE consultation.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents?
Motorcyclists are frequently injured or killed by distracted drivers. Any activity that diverts your attention from the road is considered distracted driving. Many things might cause a driver to be inattentive, including:
- Talking on a phone
- Handling radio or navigation controls
- Eating or drinking
- Talking to passengers
Texting while driving makes it difficult to pay attention to the road and is a major problem. Texting behind the wheel has been linked to a six times greater risk of causing a collision than drinking and driving.
Drowsy or Fatigued Driving
Fatigue is another cause of dangerous driving. Drowsy or fatigued drivers are to blame for many motorcycle accidents. It’s dangerous to drive while tired, and it significantly increases the chance of a motorcycle accident. An exhausted or tired driver has decreased attention and reaction speed, lowering their capacity to react appropriately to motorcyclists on the road.
Sleep deprivation has been shown to have the same impact on driving ability as a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) level of 0.08, which is considered "intoxicated" in Mississippi. A lack of sleep for 24 hours has the same detrimental impact on your driving abilities as having a BAC of 0.10.
Driving While Intoxicated
Driving while intoxicated endangers U.S. roadways and causes injuries and fatalities among motorcyclists. A motor vehicle driver may be intoxicated by alcohol, narcotics, prescription medications, or a combination of all three.
When Is a Bar or Restaurant Liable?
Drunk drivers are frequently uninsured, underinsured, or judgment proof. This means they do not have the financial resources to pay for the damages they cause. Fortunately, Mississippi’s Dram Shop Act provides an additional route of compensation for drunk driving accident victims.
Mississippi’s Alcohol and Beverage Control Act of 2014 makes sellers and licensed liquor suppliers responsible for injuries caused by those who consume alcoholic beverages provided by them. Therefore, if a vendor or provider serves alcohol to a customer who is obviously intoxicated, and the customer’s inebriation causes injuries or death, the seller or provider may be held responsible.
Who Can Be Liable For a Jackson, MS, Motorcycle Accident?
In certain situations, factors other than the motorcyclist’s actions may contribute to accidents. Under product liability legislation, a motorcycle manufacturer, supplier, or dealer may be held responsible for injuries caused by a faulty or hazardous component in the vehicle.
In addition, if a motorcycle repair professional does not properly fix an automobile and the damage causes an accident, both the irresponsible mechanic and the shop may be held accountable for any injuries caused.
What Is Gross Negligence?
If the at-fault driver was found to have acted maliciously or egregiously irresponsibly, they may be required to pay punitive or exemplary damages. To establish gross negligence, the defendant must have disregarded a substantial risk of significant damage to others.
Excessive speed alone may not demonstrate gross negligence, but other indicates of negligence might be enough to show extreme carelessness, such as:
- Speeding in heavy traffic congestion
- Driving with brakes that are known to be faulty
- Driving on a narrow residential street while intoxicated
A Jackson motorcycle accident lawyer will look at all potential causes of a motorcycle accident to ensure that the liable party is held responsible. We’ll also handle the insurance company so you can focus on your medical treatment and recovery from the motorcycle accident.
What Types of Evidence Are Helpful in a Motorcycle Wreck?
The more proof you have that shows you were riding safely when hit by another motorist, the better. Our attorneys can help gather the following evidence and more to help establish your claim:
- Helmet or headlight cam footage: A helmet camera or headlight cam that records while the motorcycle is in motion should be purchased by every motorcyclist. The videos recorded on the cameras may be definitive, showing what occurred and who was to blame for the accident. Dashboard cams owned by the other drivers in your accident might provide useful information. It’s possible that your lawyer could subpoena the video to help you.
- Surveillance video: Cameras on adjacent buildings and enterprises should be checked to see whether they recorded the accident. Surveillance footage may also provide a new perspective on the incident.
- Photographs: Take photographs of the accident scene, injuries, and damage to the vehicles involved.
- Eyewitness report: Talk to the people who come to your rescue after the accident. Inquire about anyone who has helpful information and would like to give a written statement at the scene. If they can, they should write it on their phone and email or text it to you which provides a timestamp.
- Police statement: Request a copy of the statement, and make sure it is correct. If it’s incorrect, you can ask for the statement to be changed with the help of a Mississippi motorcycle accident attorney. Investigative reports should contain measurements and documentation of skid marks and other evidence at the accident scene.
- Medical records: Medical documents and testimony from doctors and other medical caregivers, medical specialists, rehabilitation and occupational therapists, mental health professionals, and other experts regarding the cause and extent of physical and mental injuries.
- Testimony from others: Accident reconstruction experts, investigators, engineers, mechanics, and other technical experts can give testimony regarding the cause, mechanics, and effects of the accident.
Insurance Coverage for Motorcycle Accidents
It’s critical to understand the types of coverage available to you after a motorcycle accident with another vehicle. By Mississippi law, motorists are required to have insurance coverage or other proof of financial responsibility, which can reimburse your losses and other damages if you’re injured in a motorcycle accident.
In Mississippi, auto insurance is required by law. Every motorist in the state is required to have some form of coverage and must carry it at all times. Any police officer may ask for this proof of insurance if he or she has reasonable grounds to believe you are driving without it. Below you’ll find Mississippi’s minimum car insurance requirements:
- $25,000 liability coverage for bodily injury or death of one person
- $50,000 for total bodily injury or death
- $25,000 property damage
Remember that insurance companies will not always give you the full and fair amount of compensation you are owed. That's why you should always speak with an accident attorney first before accepting a settlement with insurance. The motorcycle accident lawyers at Richard Schwartz & Associates will discuss your accident in a free consultation and help you understand your rights. We are highly-experienced litigators who know how to challenge the insurance companies and fight for a full recovery on your behalf.
What Types of Compensation Are Available for Motorcycle Accidents?
In Mississippi, the person at fault for causing a motorcycle accident is liable for:
- Current and future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Property damage
- The cost of household assistance
- Permanent disability
- Emotional distress, including anxiety, depression, and any interference with family relationships
- Pain and suffering
Call Our Jackson, Mississippi Motorcycle Wreck Attorneys for a Free Consultation
If you have a motorcycle accident, call the Jackson motorcycle accident attorneys of Richard Schwartz & Associates. We will investigate your case so you can concentrate on your physical recovery. In addition, our motorcycle accident lawyers might be able to arrange for your medical care providers to wait for payment until your case is settled or tried.
Your initial consultation is free of charge. If we agree to accept your case, we work on a contingency fee basis, which means you only pay for our services if you receive a monetary award. Contact us today at 601-988-8888.