Motorcycle Accidents On Florida Roads
Motorcycle culture is part of Florida. The state has the second highest number of motorcycle registrations in the U.S., and Bike Week in Daytona attracts millions each year – even in 2021, with a pandemic occurring, as many as 300,000 people are projected to attend. That said, many Florida drivers still have difficulty sharing the road with motorcyclists, leading to an elevated accident rate where motorcyclists are disproportionately likely to be injured or killed. If you have been in a motorcycle accident with an automobile driver in Florida, enlisting an experienced attorney can be a big help in getting the compensation you deserve.
Causes & Outcomes
There were approximately 550 motorcyclist fatalities on Florida roads in 2019, which was a slight increase over the previous year. This number makes up approximately 17 percent of the state’s fatalities, which is actually a higher percentage than motorcyclist deaths nationwide (statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimate roughly 14 percent of traffic deaths in 2019 were motorcyclists). There are several reasons for this, in both Florida and in the country as a rule.
The NHTSA reports that in general, motorcyclists are 28 times more likely than passenger vehicle occupants to die in a crash. The most common reasons for this increased likelihood all have to do with automobile drivers’ negligence or distraction – speeding, not paying attention to the road, or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol – though there are factors that might make a difference on the part of the motorcyclist as well. Perhaps the most often seen is known as lane splitting, which is when a motorcyclist tries to share the road with a car instead of using the lane behind them or next to them.
Motorcyclists and Personal Injury Protection Coverage
If you are involved in a motorcycle accident in Florida, the way to try and receive compensation for the harm you have suffered is a bit different than one might imagine. Florida is a no-fault insurance state, and every automobile driver licensed in the state is required to carry at least $10,000 in personal injury protection (PIP) insurance and $10,000 in property damage liability insurance. In a normal accident case, an injured plaintiff would file a claim with their PIP insurer in order to seek reimbursement for medical bills and the like.
However, motorcycles are not considered covered vehicles under Florida’s personal injury protection law – while motorcycle insurance is required for every rider, it does not create an obligation to pursue all your claims through your insurer. If you believe that you have a valid cause of action against an (allegedly) negligent driver, you may still file suit against them if your injuries are sufficiently severe and you are able to establish that the driver’s actions were the direct cause of the harm you suffered.
Contact A Tampa Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Motorcycle accidents can be devastating for both parties, but particularly for the motorcyclist. If you have been injured in a crash, and you believe that it was due to the negligence or recklessness of someone else on the road, it is a good idea to contact the Tampa motorcycle accident attorneys at the Rinaldo Law Group. We are happy to try and assist you in getting through this difficult time in your life. Call us today for a free consultation.