Even the safest motorcyclists cannot control the actions of negligent drivers. This is one reason motorcycles are among the most dangerous ways to travel. Each year, thousands of motorcyclists are seriously injured in crashes. In 2021, 82 people died in motorcycle accidents in Louisiana, according to Louisiana Crash Data Reports. In that same period, 155 motorcycle operators and passengers sustained serious injuries.
If you were the innocent victim of a motorcycle accident and are suffering from injuries, the Morris Bart law office can help you. We have a team of more than 50 attorneys available to offer legal guidance. Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to recover compensation from the negligent driver to pay for medical expenses and lost wages.
Courses Offered By the Louisiana Motorcycle Safety, Awareness, and Operator Training Program
Many accidents that occur because of negligent motorists are unavoidable, but there are certain measures you can take as a motorcyclist to reduce the risk of crashing. For example, Louisiana offers a range of motorcycle safety courses to help riders improve their skills and reduce the risk of serious collisions.
Read on for information about the three courses that the Louisiana State Police offers to improve motorcycle skills:
Basic Rider Course
The basic rider course of the Louisiana Motorcycle Safety, Awareness, and Operator Training Program improves both mental preparation and riding skills. The class is in the form of fifteen 30-minute sessions and includes hands-on training and classroom instruction. The teacher will also take you into a controlled environment to ride your own or a provided motorcycle. There are no prerequisite skills needed for this course.
If you have a basic level of experience riding a motorcycle, the five-hour practical course may be a good option. This class will enhance your cornering, braking, and defensive-riding skills. You will also learn risk management strategies for riding in traffic. To participate in this course, you must have graduated from the basic course or have a valid Louisiana license endorsement.
This course is especially important because of the defensive driving skills taught. Often, motorcyclists suffer injuries in accidents they did nothing to cause but simply could not avoid. They are hurt because of the careless or reckless driving of a motorist who is behind the wheel of a car and may not suffer any injuries at all.
The advanced rider course also lasts five hours and includes a combination of classroom and physical instruction. This is a suitable option for people who have skills and experience riding a motorcycle. The advanced course covers several aspects of motorcycle safety and crash avoidance, including how to manage risks, as well as how to brake, corner, and swerve effectively.
The instructor will also assess your riding skills and on-cycle behavior to provide useful insight and tips on remaining even safer on the roads. This can help you address areas where you may need to improve your skills or provide you with effective options in a situation where defensive driving is necessary. You must have a valid motorcycle license to take this course.
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What If Another Driver Causes My Louisiana Motorcycle Crash?
Unfortunately, even the most experienced motorcyclists get in collisions with motorists. Drivers of passenger cars or commercial vehicles often fail to see motorcyclists or make other careless and reckless mistakes behind the wheel. They may walk away with only minor injuries, but the motorcyclist is ejected from their bike and may suffer multiple impacts, such as with the initial vehicle and the street.
Possible Injuries in a Motorcycle Accident
Common injuries for motorcyclists occur in a wide range of severities. Many suffer relatively minor injuries, but devastating crashes and permanent impairments are also possible. Motorcycle accident injuries could include:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Concussions and other head injuries
- Spinal cord injuries (SCIs)
- Other back and neck injuries
- Fractures, especially to the limbs
- Internal injuries
- Joint injuries
- Soft tissue damage
- “Road rash” and other burns and scarring
What Damages Can You Collect in a Motorcycle Accident Claim?
Treatment for these injuries could last a few hours or several months. Some victims require inpatient rehabilitation, and others need ongoing care and support. Medical care on its own could cost thousands of dollars. This does not consider the missed wages, decreased earning ability, motorcycle repairs, or intangible damages such as the pain and suffering they endured.
A motorcycle accident attorney can seek compensation based on the value of your damages. They will calculate a fair value of your losses and seek a settlement from the at-fault driver’s insurer based on this number.
If your attorney cannot negotiate an appropriate agreement, or if they feel your case is better suited to a lawsuit, they will sue. If the case goes to trial, your lawyer will ask the jury to rule on your behalf and award fair compensation.
The Statute of Limitations for Motorcycle Accident Claims in Louisiana
There are deadlines for suing based on a Louisiana motorcycle accident case. Most injured parties only have up to one year from the crash date to begin a civil lawsuit under La. Civ. Code Art. 3492. In some situations, the deadline may be even shorter.
Missing this deadline could jeopardize financial recovery, so we encourage you to act quickly.
Speak With a Louisiana Motorcycle Accident Lawyer at Morris Bart, LLC for Free
If you were in a motorcycle accident that left you with serious injuries and expensive medical bills, contact the Morris Bart law firm today. We can investigate your accident and determine if you may have valid grounds for a civil lawsuit. We have 15 locations across the Gulf South, including seven in Louisiana: New Orleans, Shreveport, Lafayette, Alexandria, Baton Rouge, Monroe, and Lake Charles.
We work based on a contingency fee and provide free initial consultations for possible clients. To speak with a personal injury lawyer about your potential case, call us today.
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