On-road experience and accidents
A motorcyclist's on-road experience can play a role in whether he or she gets in an accident. This is partly because the more experience you have riding a motorcycle, the more quickly and appropriately you are likely to respond to potential hazards and unexpected obstacles. You are also more likely to be able to identify where hazards are on the road if you do not have to concentrate as closely on the basics of simply driving the motorcycle. In the event of an accident, a knowledgeable Maine motorcycle accident attorney can help assess what happened and develop a sound strategy to obtain compensation when appropriate.Proximate Cause in Maine
Although Maine roads are some of the safest in the nation, there are numerous hazards, particularly for motorcyclists. These include snowy conditions, icy roads, construction work, stray or wild animals, and drunk drivers. Sometimes these different conditions and the responses of drivers to them combine to create a crash and cause multiple injuries.
One of the key elements in a negligence case is "proximate cause." This refers to an event that is not only an actual cause, but also a legal cause of an accident. There has to be a reasonable connection between the defendant's act or omission and the plaintiff's damage. Suppose, for example, a driver has a blood-alcohol level of .06% on an icy road driving uphill one night. A motorcyclist is going downhill towards the car and loses control of his vehicle. The driver sees the motorcyclist lose control of his vehicle, careening towards him, and pulls to the side of the road in order to avoid the motorcyclist. However, the motorcyclist, unfamiliar with driving on icy patches, swerves, crashing into the car parked on the side of the road and suffering serious injuries.
In spite of the driver's blood alcohol level, his decision to pull over to the side of the road is actually a safe and reasonable decision. There are no inferences that can be drawn that the motorist's decision to pull over actually caused the motorcyclist's wheels to slip on the ice and crash, or even that it was foreseeable that the motorcyclist would crash into the car in particular. The ice and the motorcyclist's inexperience, in that case, may be considered the proximate cause of his accident.
On the other hand, perhaps this accident occurs on a road that has not been maintained and has been covered with a slippery and hazardous material due to construction work. The construction company has posted no warning signs. If the motorcyclist does not perceive the hazard in time, he may lose control of his vehicle and crash into the car parked by the road. In that case, the construction company's negligence in failing to warn of a hazard it created on the road, may be the proximate cause of the accident.Put Our Experience To Work for You in Maine
Some motorcyclists experience concussions as a result of their accidents. As a result, they may not be sure about what happened to cause the accident. We have many years of experience representing motorcyclists. We work with a very experienced former law enforcement detective for purposes of investigating causation and other aspects of a motorcycle accident. Retain a trustworthy Maine motorcycle injury attorney to help obtain compensation for your losses. Contact Peter Thompson & Associates at 1.800.804.2004 or via our online form.