In recent years there has been an increase in injuries and fatalities to motorcyclists, and as of 2004, fatalities increased eight years in a row. Motorcycles are the smallest motorized vehicles on the roadways, and many accidents involving motorcyclists happen when other drivers fail to see them soon enough to avoid crashing into their bikes.
According to Waterbury motorcycle accident lawyer, Tim Moynahan, statistics show that a significant percentage of accidents in Connecticut are people traveling on motorcycles. Motorcycle riders here may encounter more significant risks because of congested roads and aggressive drivers. Cars and trucks have seatbelts and airbags to minimize the risk of injury in a wreck, but unfortunately, the same level of physical protection is not in place for motorcycles. These factors can lead to various motorcycle accident injuries.
Motorcycle Crashes Range in Severity
The truth is that a crash is often unavoidable, even with the most cautious of motorcyclists. Considering this, a vast majority of two-wheeled accidents will cause injuries to the rider. When this happens, injuries can range from minor nuisances to severe traumas that require a great deal of medical intervention and lengthy rehabilitation. In worst cases, a motorcycle accident can take you or your loved one’s life.
Motorcycle Accident in Milford, CT
According to NBC Connecticut, a motorcycle driver wound up in critical condition at Yale New Haven Hospital after a collision on May 16, 2020. The accident happened at the intersection of New Haven Ave. at Bonsilene Street, and it involved a1988 Kawasaki motorcycle and a 2019 Audi Q5. The injured motorcycle driver was identified as Wade Haskins-Mooney, and the driver of the Audi and other passengers in the car were not injured. Authorities say the investigation is ongoing, and anyone with information about the crash is asked to phone (203) 878-5244 to talk to a member of the Milford Police Department Traffic Division.
Mr. Mooney is in critical condition at the time of the reporting, which is one step up from being in serious condition. That means that his vital signs are unstable and not within the normal range. Patients in critical condition may often be unconscious, as well. He might be facing a rough road ahead after recovery if he wasn’t wearing a helmet or wearing a partial helmet as Connecticut laws permit.
Partial Helmet Laws in CT
Connecticut adopted partial helmet laws in 1989, however, motorcyclists in states that have partial helmet laws on the books are more likely to sustain facial, head, and traumatic brain injuries (TBI) after a wreck than they would in states that require motorcyclists to wear full helmets. The helmet use issue has been revisited over the years, and the most recent push for change happened in 2005 without any success.
Most Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries
When a biker crashes and skids off the roadway, there is nothing that stands between them and unforgiving pavement. Even if there is no collision involved and they have to stop abruptly, they can be ejected from their bike. Both scenarios can lead to catastrophic injuries. Common injuries to motorcyclists in Waterbury, Connecticut after a crash include:
Road rash is the most common injury that happens to motorcycle riders when they crash. Also known as road burn, strawberries, or raspberries, it is considered one of the least serious motorcycle accident injuries. Still, sections of sensitive tissue are ground off of you painfully when your body meets the road. Motorcyclists have described the experience as excruciating, and the sores can get infected even with proper medical care.
Straining a muscle when exercising is one thing, but muscle strains that can occur after a motorcycle crash is truly a different story. When the motorcycle rider’s arms or legs strike the ground during an accident, the damage done to their muscles may be severe. The damage may also be extensive enough that you require physical therapy and rehabilitation.
Tissue lacerations, much like road rash, happen when sharp surfaces or rough surfaces such as asphalt scrape a motorcyclist’s flesh during an accident. However, the injuries are much more severe with tissue lacerations than with road rash. Moreover, the resulting tissue damage is very grave and can often lead to scarring and disfigurement. Motorcyclists may also find that they lose sensation or feeling in their extremities and areas of their arms and legs due to damage caused to underlying nerves during the crash.
Since doors, windows, or seatbelts don’t protect bikers, they are incredibly susceptible to the fracturing or breaking of their bones when they are in a collision. This is so even when they are involved in a minor motorcycle accident. Hard tissue injuries can range in severity from a slight hairline fracture of the forearm to compound fractures of the femur, to more serious spinal fractures.
Spinal Cord and Head Injuries
A violent impact between a motorcycle and another vehicle can cause an outcome that is hard to recover from neurologically. For instance, the motorcyclist can suffer from compressed nerves, spinal cord damage, and severe head trauma after being struck or pinned by hard or sharp structures in a crash. The effects of neurological damage can be temporary, long-lasting, or even permanent in some cases of paralysis and severe brain damage.
Injuries to Lower Body
Many motorcycle accidents result in trauma to the rider’s lower body, even when the rider is wearing motorcycle armor or other protective gear that covers their legs and feet. Lower-extremity injuries also occur because of the tendency for the motorcycle to fall on top of the rider. Typical injuries to the motorcyclist include torn ligaments of the knee, broken foot and leg bones, and twisted ankles.
Thoracic injuries, or injuries to the part of the body between the neck and the abdomen, are prevalent, especially among older riders who tend to ride larger motorcycles. Older motorcyclists were mostly involved in crashes that involved overturning their bike or striking highway structures. In cases of these roadway accidents, older bikers were found to have multiple thoracic injuries and rib fractures. More importantly, a cardiac rupture that occurs after blunt thoracic trauma can happen in any vehicular accident, and it is almost always fatal.
When there is a motorcycle crash, a biker may be subjected to blunt force or penetrating trauma. The body decelerates when it hits a hard surface such as a wall, pavement, or side of the other vehicle. The force or penetration of this trauma can cause internal organ damage and subsequent internal bleeding. Internal bleeding is often a silent killer because the damage may not be immediately apparent or caught by emergency personnel in time.
Motorcyclists often face a harsh reality after being in a wreck: Permanent damage to their limbs and extremities. This trauma often results from being pinned between two vehicles, or from being pinned down to the roadway. The fallout from such a crash can range from having a bleeding thigh that causes you to get airlifted to save you from bleeding out or the amputation of your finger, arm, hand, toe, feet or leg. In some horrible motorcycle accidents, riders had to undergo multiple limb amputations.
Those who are ‘fortunate’ enough to survive debilitating motorcycle accident injuries face circumstances that often lessen their quality of life. The professional and experienced attorneys at the Moynahan Law Firm know motorcycle accidents are unique, and we understand these types of cases and their complexities. Our Waterbury, CT attorneys could help you determine whether there are options for seeking compensation. Contact us today for a FREE consultation to help you decide whether you need our firm’s help. The Moynahan Law Firm handles all motorcycle accident injury cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning you don’t pay for our services unless you receive compensation for your injuries and expenses.