Motorcycle riders are at a significantly higher risk of serious injury compared to car and truck drivers. Injuries in motorcycle accidents often lead to months or years of rehabilitation, permanent health damage, income loss, and severe mental trauma. Let’s examine a list of common motorcycle crash injuries and their consequences.
Frequently Occurring Injuries in Motorcycle Accidents
Unlike cars and trucks, motorcycles lack external protection for the motorist. Even riders who wear a motorcycle helmet and use appropriate safety gear may sustain the following severe injuries.
Victims of motorcycle crashes often suffer head injuries, like a skull fracture or a traumatic brain injury. Such injuries are especially common if impact throws you off your motorcycle. Brain injuries that involve intracranial bleeding and swelling could lead to permanent brain damage and even death.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Spinal cord injuries occur in many motorcycle accidents. Victims often suffer damage to multiple vertebrae, commonly in the thoracic region (the spine’s middle section). Spinal cord damage could cause long-term paralysis or death.
Neck and Back Injuries
A motorcycle accident can cause what’s known as “whiplash,” a rapid back-and-forth movement of the neck that may damage neck and upper back muscles, ligaments, nerves, and discs. While many victims recover from whiplash after a few weeks, some will experience lingering symptoms like prolonged neck pain and reduced range of motion.
Fractures are extremely common injuries in motorcycle accidents. Victims may sustain fractures to their legs, arms, ribs, pelvis, and other bones. Facial fractures are also prevalent in riders who don’t wear a helmet and could cause permanent disfigurement. If you suspect you suffered a fracture, try not to move or apply pressure to the affected area until trained help arrives.
Burns and Skin Damage
Bikers may sustain severe burns if they collide with a vehicle that catches fire. Accident victims may also suffer road rash if they fall from the motorcycle and skid along asphalt with impact force. Deep skin damage is extremely painful and may require plastic surgery, skin grafts, and a lengthy recovery period with a high risk of secondary infections and possibly permanent scarring.
Internal Organ Damage
The liver, kidneys, lungs, pancreas, and other internal organs could also suffer from the impact of a motorcycle accident. Consequences may include life-threatening internal bleeding and organ failure. Symptoms like swelling and abdominal pain after an accident could indicate internal organ damage.
Mental Health Issues
The suffering of motorcycle accident victims doesn’t end with physical pain and trauma. After an accident, you may experience a range of mental health issues, including anxiety, depression, flashbacks, PTSD, and a crippling fear of operating a vehicle again. Mental health problems require professional help that may include counseling, group therapy, and prescription medications like antidepressants and mood stabilizers.
Why You Should Seek Medical Care After a Motorcycle Injury
Some injuries in motorcycle accidents are almost unnoticeable at first. You may walk about, talk, and feel like you just need a bit of rest to bounce back. You can attribute this lack of symptoms to adrenaline, which shoots into your bloodstream during the accident and keeps you from feeling pain for a few hours.
Some injuries, like traumatic brain injury, can have delayed effects. Perhaps you remember the tragic story of actress Natasha Richardson, who suffered a head injury while skiing, declined medical help at first, and eventually passed away from epidural hematoma, i.e., blood pooling between the skull and brain. Motorcyclists often suffer similar injuries, and early diagnosis could save your life.
Timely medical care is also vital for pursuing compensation after a motorcycle accident. Your medical records will serve as important supporting evidence when your motorcycle accident attorney helps you calculate damages and build your claim.
Your Prospects After a Motorcycle Injury
Injuries in motorcycle accidents can have far-reaching impacts on the rest of your life. Depending on the type and severity of your injuries, you may deal with:
- A lengthy rehabilitation period with major prospective costs
- Permanently restricted mobility
- Inability to work or continue in your former line of work
- The need to equip your home for disability or move to a different residence
- Loss of meaningful activities like traveling or sports
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Reduced quality of life
As you add up your damages, it’s important to calculate not only your current out-of-pocket expenses but also accident-related costs you may encounter down the road, like surgery or medical equipment. Your claim should also account for your estimated lifelong income losses, which your lawyer can help you calculate based on your age, work position, and annual salary.
Who Is Responsible for Covering Your Medical Expenses and Other Damages?
If your accident occurred because of another motorist’s negligence or traffic violation, this motorist’s insurance company would be responsible for compensating you. As a motorcycle accident victim in California, you may expect your settlement to cover:
- Past and prospective medical costs
- Lost wages and long-term income loss
- The cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle
- Other accident-related costs
In case your damages exceed the at-fault party’s insurance policy cap, you could also activate your Uninsured Motorist coverage or health insurance for injuries in motorcycle accidents. You may also qualify for Medi-Cal based on your disability status, age, and other criteria. A skilled motorcycle accident lawyer can help you use all possible routes to secure a reasonable settlement after your injury.
Khalil Law Group Will Defend Your Rights Throughout Your Motorcycle Injury Claim in Orange County, CA
Riders who sustained injuries in motorcycle accidents face debilitating pain, an arduous recovery process, and staggering medical bills. If you or your loved one were injured in a motorcycle accident, we at Khalil Law Group are here to fight for your rights and help you seek compensation. Our motorcycle accident attorneys can assist in gathering evidence, provide you with advice, and support you throughout your case.
Call (714) 617-7870 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation with a motorcycle injury attorney in Newport Beach, CA.