Riding a motorcycle or a moped is an excellent alternative to a car in the city. It’s so much more convenient and mobile, plus easier to park. On the downside, motorcycles are not always as safe. Without the protective roof, glass, seats, seatbelts, and even headrests of a car, you are at a greater risk for moderate and severe motorcycle accident injuries. This list explains some of the most common injuries for motorcycle riders. Hopefully, this information can help you make safe decisions regarding safety gear and injury prevention.
If you or a loved one was injured in a motorcycle accident, talk to an attorney today. The motorcycle accident attorneys at Sullivan and Galleshaw represent injured riders throughout New York City. We fight to get motorcycle victims the compensation they need to pay for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Typical Motorcycle Accident Injuries
If you ride a motorcycle, learning about the most common injuries and how to avoid them is very important. Our lawyers have put together this list of some of the most common injuries motorcycle riders face after an accident:
New York State law requires all riders to wear a helmet when riding a motorcycle. This is a great step toward protecting riders from severe brain injuries in motorcycle accidents. In fact, the New York Department of Health states that head injuries are the number one cause of death in motorcycle accidents, so ensuring proper helmet safety is crucial. New York’s helmet laws go even further, requiring that each helmet meets US Department of Transportation safety standards.
Even with a helmet, you can still suffer serious injuries. Concussions are a common motorcycle accident injury, and involve mild injury to the brain itself. Concussions may involve temporary unconsciousness, nausea, and problems with memory and thinking. More severe forms of concussions, called traumatic brain injury (TBI), can actually leave you with very severe effects. Often, people who suffer from severe brain injuries undergo mood and personality changes, lose motor function, have trouble identifying or remembering common objects or people, and may even fall into a coma or persistent vegetative state.
Road Rash and Abrasions
If you fall or are thrown off your bike during a motorcycle accident, you can often face serious injuries when you hit the road. When you slide along the road surface or hit the ground hard, you can often face serious abrasions. If you were traveling at high speeds when you hit, you could suffer road rash injuries on multiple parts of your body. Sometimes, these abrasions can even be deep enough to destroy skin and expose muscle or bone underneath.
Often, jeans and other simple clothing are not enough to protect against these injuries. Motorcycle leathers are tougher than denim and can help keep your skin intact when you fall off your motorcycle. Your hands are especially vulnerable to injuries, since the instinct is to try to catch yourself when you fall. To prevent abrasions on your palms and knuckles, always wear motorcycle gloves.
Along with the risk of abrasions, you also face a serious risk of arm injuries from bracing yourself or falling off a motorcycle. Motorcycles may not seem very high off the ground once you’re used to riding them, but that distance seems a lot further during a serious fall. If you are thrown from your bike during a crash, you might fall even further. The instinct to brace yourself during a fall could serious inure your wrists and the joints in your arms. Falling onto your shoulder could also injure your shoulder, arms, or collar bone. A front-impact collision could injure your hands or forearms, or push your arms into the shoulder joints, causing serious injuries.
These injuries could require lengthy rehabilitation and physical therapy. Wearing safety pads and motorcycle suits prevent other injuries while falling, helping you avoid injuries like these.
If your bike slips and falls during a crash, you can suffer moderate injuries to your legs. Since your legs are on either side of the bike, your motorcycle could fall on top of you, pinning your leg to the ground. In that case, you might face serious road rash injuries or even crush injuries to your leg. This could break bones and damage softer tissue. Wearing sturdy motorcycle pants with padding and armor can help protect your legs during a crash.
In worse cases of side-impact crashes, you could face amputation injuries. If your leg is pinned between your motorcycle and another vehicle or object, you could lose the leg. Avoiding dangerous intersections and using the utmost caution when pulling out after a red light can help avoid side-impact crashes.
Neck, Back, and Spine Injuries
Any auto accident runs the risk of serious neck and spinal injuries. Your neck can suffer serious whiplash injuries in any accident if your head is suddenly whipped back and forth. In a car accident, your seat’s headrest works to keep your head from snapping back during a crash. Many helmets and motorcycle collars work to do the same thing for your head in the case of a motorcycle crash.
If you fall on your back or neck during a crash, you could suffer very serious spinal cord injuries. Your spinal cord runs through your spine and relays signals between your brain and the rest of your body. If these nerves are damaged, you could lose feeling or become paralyzed below the point of injury. In the many cases, the bones of your spinal column can fall out of alignment or break, causing damage to the spinal cord. Back pads and other motorcycle armor helps reduce the effects of severe impacts during a crash.
Queens Motorcycle Injury Lawyers
The Queens auto accident attorneys at Sullivan and Galleshaw represent injured motorcycle victims throughout the city. If you or a loved one was injured in a New York City motorcycle crash, talk to a Queens personal injury lawyer about your case right away. For a free consultation on your injury case, call our attorneys today at (718) 843-0300.