According to a recent story published by Yahoo Sports, Florida State University tight end Nick O’Leary, grandson of legendary golfer Jack Nicklaus, was involved in a shocking motorcycle accident in May, fortunately walking away without any serious injuries.
The video posted along with the story shows O’Leary driving his motorcycle in Tallahassee, Fla., when another vehicle drivers directly into his path, impeding his right of way. O’Leary crashed his motorcycle into the side of the car, which shattered on impact and threw O’Leary to the ground where he slid almost a hundred feet down Mission Road. Incredibly, O’Leary walked away from the accident and was later taken to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital where he was treated for nonlife-threatening injuries.
According to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (“NHTSA”), one out of every ten fatal motor vehicle accidents in the United States involves a collision with a motorcycle. With its beautiful scenery and temperate weather, the state of Florida sees a large number of motorcyclists traveling on its roadways each year. Unfortunately, there has also been an accompanying increase in the number of motorcycle accidents.
Because motorcycles provide riders a limited amount of protection compared to cars or other four-wheeled vehicles, the severity of injuries suffered by motorcyclists is generally much greater than in other motor vehicle accidents. Further, because motorcycles are, due to their size, generally less visible than other vehicles, they are often at higher risk for becoming involved in an accident.
According to the NHTSA, about 82,000 motorists experienced some injury due to a motorcycle crash in 2011. Although motor vehicle accidents are always dangerous, motorcyclist are at a much greater risk of being involved in a catastrophic collision. Motorcyclists are sixteen times more likely to killed in a traffic accident than the driver of an automobile.
Under Florida law, motorcycle riders over the age of 21 are not required to wear a helmet, which has lead to a higher number of injuries due to motorcycle collisions. In fact, since the repeal of Florida’s helmet law in 2000, the number of fatal crashes increased by 21%. The crash statistics on motorcycle accidents in Florida are shocking:
*Approximately 80% of motorcycle crashes occurring in Florida result in an injury or death.
*Studies have concluded that Florida’s age-restricted helmet law has contributed significantly to an increase in motorcycle deaths.
*In 2011, motorcycle fatalities accounted for 17.0% of all traffic fatalities in the Florida and 18.8% of all traffic fatalities were motorcyclists and their passengers.
If you, your family or friends have been involved an accident in which you sustained injuries at the hands of a negligent driver, you may need legal representation to protect your right to compensation. The motorcycle accident attorneys at Gerson and Schwartz, P.A. have extensive experience representing individuals who have been injured in motorcycle accidents. If you or someone you know has been injured in a motorcycle accident, contact the attorneys of Gerson and Schwartz, P.A. today.