Responsible motorcycle riders in Miami are well-aware of the traffic regulations and safety tips published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, so the vast majority do not take unnecessary risks. Unfortunately, other drivers and the general public may not see you as a safety conscious, law-abiding rider. Many suffer from bias that limits their thinking, and it can also affect you if you are injured in an accident. Prejudice may impact your claim with the responsible driver’s insurance company, and there may be implications if you take your case to court.
The good news is that there are legal strategies to help overcome the bias against motorcycle riders and ensure you are treated fairly. A Miami motorcycle accident attorney can assist with these and other challenges to get the compensation you deserve as a victim.
Sources of Bias Against Motorcycle Riders
One source of prejudice is rooted in fact, to a certain extent. Motorcycles are narrower and smaller than passenger vehicles, so visibility can be an issue. Another person may consider you as partly to blame in an accident because you are harder to see. However, other sources of bias are not based on fact:
- Motorcycles make more noise as compared to cars, especially when accelerating. Many other drivers and witnesses assume – usually incorrectly – that the rider is speeding and creating a safety hazard.
- The stereotype from the 1950s persists about motorcycle riders as being “bad boys,” daredevils, and risk takers. Others may see you as contributing to a motorcycle accident through traffic violations or reckless conduct.
Reducing Anti-Motorcycle Bias
Motor vehicle crashes are usually based upon negligence, which means that you must establish certain facts to recover compensation. You need to show that the other driver did not exercise reasonable care behind the wheel, and this circumstance led to the collision. Solid, concrete evidence is essential to make sure the insurance company or jury cannot ignore the facts. They cannot rely on prejudice if you present:
- Pictures that show the skid marks of both the motorcycle and the other vehicle;
- Images depicting the location and extent of the vehicle damage;
- Video footage revealing the other driver’s careless acts, which may be available from nearby businesses with security cameras;
- Testimony from neutral witnesses who were not involved in the crash;
- Traffic signals and the distance between them, which can provide information on speed;
- Your medical records describing your injuries, treatment, and physical limitations;
- Your helmet, clothing, boots, gloves, and other equipment that may have been damaged, showing the severity and nature of your injuries. Plus, these items can also overcome bias as evidence of your dedication to motorcycle safety.
A Miami Motorcycle Accident Lawyer can Help You Overcome Bias
Legal representation is essential as the victim of a motorcycle crash, especially since it takes skill and experience to overcome popular – often false – bias about riders. To learn more about filing an injury claim, please contact Gerson & Schwartz, PA to set up a free case assessment. We can meet with you at our offices in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, or West Palm Beach to advise you on your rights.
(image courtesy of Shajan Jacob)