Motorcyclists face some of the most dangerous conditions on the road, and any collision has the potential to be severely injurious, even deadly. South Carolina has one of the highest accident rates in the nation and riders must be especially cautious when traveling through cities, along state highways, or along the interstate. Fortunately, the number of motorcycle accident deaths is down, according to the state Department of Public Safety. The reduction in accidents has been linked to raised safety awareness, education, and more skilled ridership among South Carolina residents.
An analysis of preliminary data indicates that fatality rates are down from 117 by November 9th, 2013 to 76 on November 9, 2014. Authorities reported that they are seeing fewer deaths occurring by motorcycle accidents involving failure to yield right of way. These types of accidents can often be fatal for motorcyclists. A South Carolina motorcycle safety task force representative stated that one particular change has helped with reducing accidents.
Last year, riders were only required to renew their permits without taking a skills test. The state Department of Motor Vehicles estimated that as many as 30% of individuals who operated one of the 112,000 motorcycles registered in the state held only beginners' permits. According to the agency, many motorcyclists are riding with beginner's permits rather than licenses. Motorcycle experts also report that bikes and models change over the years so it is important for riders to have the skills and ability to handle a motorcycle. Now the DMV requires those who want to renew a permit must take a skills test to receive their license. Riders who do not pass the skills test are now unable to renew their permit.
Other changes are also helping to build awareness and improve safety among the South Carolina riding community. The Motorcycle Awareness Alliance is one organization that is helping to keep riders informed and up-to-date to prevent motorcycle accident fatalities. The state Department of Transportation is also creating public awareness campaigns to remind drivers to be more aware of motorcyclists when sharing the road. According to reports, there were "share the road" and "Target Zero" campaign billboards placed in the 15 counties with the highest rate of motorcycle fatalities.
Motorcyclists often face a stigma of being "high-risk" or "dangerous," though evidence shows that they face additional risks, including physical vulnerability on the road as well as invisibility to other motorists. When involved in an accident, it is important to consult with an experienced legal representative to help protect your rights. You may be entitled to significant compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, future care taking needs, and other personal losses. Families who have lost a loved one may be entitled to compensation for wrongful death.
Our Asheville motorcycle injury attorneys are experienced with all aspects of civil litigation and can help you protect your rights to recovery.
Though the number of fatalities has decreased, motorcyclists continue to face threats on South Carolina highways and byways. Drivers should be aware of motorcyclists on the road and riders should be properly trained and experienced to ensure proper handling of a bike and compliance with road rules and regulations.
Continue reading "Motorcyclists Still Face Serious Risks in NC, SC" »