How Rear-End Motorcycle Collisions Occur & How to Avoid Them

Rear End Motorcycle AccidentA rear-end accident is one of the most common accidents our motorcycle accident lawyers find themselves representing, and unfortunately the injuries sustained can be quite serious. Motorcyclists don’t wear seat belts so they are easily thrown over their bike when they are suddenly hit from behind. Some of the most common injuries that result are:

  • Spinal cord injuries.
  • Traumatic brain injuries.
  • Back and neck injuries.
  • Broken bones; usually the wrists, hands and arms.
  • Shoulder injuries.
  • Facial and dental injuries.
  • Road rash.
  • Amputations.
  • Internal injuries.

Common Causes of Rear-End Motorcycle Crashes

Usually the driver of the vehicle following behind the motorcycle is responsible for the collision. Florida law states that all drivers must maintain a safe following distance from the vehicle in front of them to avoid a rear-end accident. Typically, these common motorcycle crashes occur at stop signs and traffic lights, crosswalks, intersections and when traffic is slowing down. In most cases, the driver responsible for rear-ending the motorcyclist was:

  • Distracted.
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  • Tailgating.
  • Speeding.
  • Driving recklessly.
  • Fatigued.

How Motorcyclists Can Try to Avoid Being Rear-Ended

Defensive driving is by far the most important skill to learn for any driver, especially motorcyclists because they don’t have the protection nor the visibility of those traveling in a vehicle. Here’s a list of things a motorcyclist can do to try to avoid being rear-ended:

  • Always use your mirrors. Be sure to check your mirrors often. Knowing when other drivers are approaching you from behind will give you more time to avoid them if they don’t seem like they are going to stop soon enough.
  • Always use your turn signals. Using your turn signals will allow the drivers behind you to know what you are going to do next.
  • Slow down when coming to a stop sign, traffic light or intersection. Slowing down sooner will help attract the attention of the drivers behind you. Always check to make sure your brake lights are working before getting on your bike.
  • Don’t tailgate. Always keep a safe distance between your motorcycle and the vehicle in front of you. If the car in front of you suddenly stops and you are following too closely, you will then have to brake quickly. This could result in the driver behind you to rear-end you.
  • Avoid tailgaters. Be sure to check your mirrors for tailgaters. If you feel someone is following to close, safely switch lanes or pull over to let the vehicle go by.
  • Leave a buffer of space in front of you when stopped at an intersection. Leaving plenty of space between you and the vehicle in front of you will give you more time to move out of a dangerous situation if the vehicle behind you is coming too close.
  • When coming to a stop, position your bike to the left or right side of the lane. This will allow you to quickly move to the next lane if the car behind you is approaching rapidly.
  • Wear brightly colored clothing. Motorcycles are hard to see even during the day. Make yourself as visible as possible.

Have You Been Injured In A Motorcycle Accident?

If you've been hurt in Florida motorcycle accident you should speak with an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our office directly at 727.446.0840 to schedule your free, no obligation consultation.

Jim Dodson
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A Florida injury lawyer, family man and avid cyclist who clients have trusted for over 25 years.