Deadly Motorcycle Wreck in Boynton Beach
Another left-turn motorcycle wreck has claimed the life of another rider. This time, the victim was a Florida teenager.
The wreck occurred at the intersection of Northwest 14th and North Seacrest. A 49-year-old man driving a Mercury Grand Marquis turned in front of an oncoming motorcycle. The force of the impact propelled the rider off his bike, killing him almost instantly. Few other details were available.
Left-Turn Motorcycle Wrecks
Crashes like the one in the above story make up over a third of the fatal motorcycle wrecks in the United States. Such collisions might be even more common in Florida, where many motorists drive large vehicles, like SUVs and pickups, which are difficult for motorists to see around.
This difficulty only explains part of the problem. Frequently, motorists simply do not look out for motorcyclists. Most riders who have gone down probably heard the tortfeasor (negligent driver) say something like “You came out of nowhere and I never saw you.” This weak excuse often sets up the last clear chance defense. More on that below.
These collisions usually throw riders off their bikes. As a result, they usually sustain catastrophic injuries, such as:
- Head Injuries: Motorcycle helmets help prevent some, but not all, head injuries. No matter what doctors do, these wounds are permanent. Once brain cells die, they never regenerate.
- Exsanguination: Blood loss, usually from internal wounds, is often the official cause of death in these cases. Frequently, victims lose about a fifth of their blood volume before first responders reach the scene.
- Biker’s Arm: As they fall off their bikes, most riders naturally extend their arms to break their falls. This impulsive reaction usually causes nerves in the brachial plexus region to snap. The resulting paralysis is normally permanent.
Damages in a motorcycle crash claim usually include compensation for economic losses, such as medical bills, and noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering. A Port St. Lucie personal injury attorney might be able to obtain punitive damages as well, in some extreme cases.
Turning in front of an oncoming vehicle, whether it is a car or not, is illegal in Florida. As such, the negligence per se doctrine often applies in these situations. Tortfeasors are presumptively liable for damages if:
- They violate a traffic law, and
- That violation substantially causes injury.
Additional evidence of negligence includes things like the tortfeasor’s speed at the time of the crash and failure to signal the upcoming turn or lane change.
Frequently, emergency responders do not issue such citations, even if the tortfeasor was clearly in the wrong. Many police officers consider car wrecks a civil matter between insurance companies, and they do not want to get involved.
The ordinary negligence doctrine could apply as well. Essentially, negligence is a lack of care. Operators have a responsibility to drive defensively and avoid accidents when possible. Turning in front of an oncoming motorcycle arguably violates this duty.
Frequently, insurance company lawyers argue that since the rider “came out of nowhere,” the rider had the last clear chance to avoid the wreck. This doctrine, which often applies in head-on and rear-end crashes, excuses negligence in these cases.
However, the rider must have the last clear chance to avoid the crash, as opposed to any possible chance. Frequently, if a rider steers suddenly, the rider will cause a worse crash than the one s/he avoids.
Connect with an Assertive Lawyer
Motorcycle accident victims are usually entitled to substantial compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced Port St. Lucie personal injury lawyer, contact Eighmie Law Firm, P.A. You have a limited amount of time to act.