Motorcycle Accidents On the Rise in Florida
On crowded highways and during rush hours, riding a motorcycle can be a risky proposition. Data compiled from vehicle accidents have indicated that up to 70% of road accidents involving motor vehicles and motorcycles were caused by the absence of visibility on the part of vehicle drivers. If a motorcycle enters a driver’s blind area and a disruption on the road occurs, a collision may be unavoidable.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety offers motorcycle riders valuable information about the best precautions to take to minimize the risk of motorcycle accidents. Some of their tips include the use of anti-lock brakes and wearing a helmet while riding.
Florida Motorcycle Helmet Law
In Florida, the law mandates a helmet is requirement for all motorcycle operators age 20 and younger. This motorcycle helmet law also extends to cover low-powered cycles with a speed capacity of over 30 mph, and any category of motorcycles or scooters that are being operated by anyone age 15 or younger.
Broward County Motorcycle Fatalities on the Rise
A disturbing trend of increasingly brazen maneuvers by daredevil motorcyclists on south Florida highways is fueling a deadly uptick in motorcycle accidents and fatalities. Such daredevil antics often mean that motorcyclists are speeding, zig-zagging between lanes, and showboating on the roadways. A recent, fatal motorcycle accident on I-95 only served to highlight an increasingly serious problem.
Popping Wheelies to Impress Turns Fatal
A young man driving a motorcycle on 1-95 was killed recently after he lost control of his bike, smashed into a light pole and went flying over a barrier wall to the street below. Witnesses reported that the motorcyclist was popping wheelies, traveling at high speeds and weaving in and out of traffic leading up to the crash. Witnesses say it that it appeared the young man was trying to impress another motorist on the road: a woman in a car.
A Helmet Can’t Protect You at High Speeds
While the driver in this tragic incident was reportedly wearing a helmet, the speed and subsequent impact of the crash were too great for his helmet to adequately protect him. The Florida Highway Patrol reports that like the recent incident on I-95, many fatal motorcycle accidents involve motorcycles that they classify as “modified fast bikes.”
Florida Motorcycle Crashes Increase
According to the FHP, in 2008 there was a record high of 9,618 motorcycle crashes across Florida. In 2012, the most recent year of record, the Florida Highway Patrol recorded 9,384 crashes involving motorcycles, second only to the record set in 2008.
The FHP’s yearly motorcycle traffic crash report documents the incidents of the 425 Florida motorcyclists who were killed in 2012, the most since 2008, as well as the 7,809 who were injured. The year 2012 also recorded 839 injuries to motorcycle passengers, the highest number since 2008.
Slow Down, Ride Safely and Stay Safe
Operating a motorcycle is already a risky proposition, so it’s important to always ride responsibly. High speeds, showboating and reckless driving behavior often result in fatal outcomes for motorcyclists. Please ride responsibly to help minimize the risk of becoming a tragic statistic.
If you or a loved one has been involved in a motorcycle accident, please contact the Fort Lauderdale law offices of Boone & Davis by calling 954-566-9919. We are here to help.