Many of Our Residents Are Motorcycle EnthusiastsMotorcycles abound in and around Sugar Land. Texas has the sixth-highest number of registered motorcycles in the United States, trailing behind California, Florida, Ohio, New York, and Pennsylvania. The dangerous intersections in the Sugar Land area put our community members at risk. The Houston-Woodlands-Sugar Land Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) is the fifth most populous MSA in the country. Some of the and riskiest intersections for motorcyclists include:
- Highway 6 at Northbound US 59
- The 1900 block of Highway 6
- Highway 6 and Lexington Boulevard
- Highway 6 and Town Center Boulevard North
- Eldridge Road and West Airport Boulevard
- Eldridge Road and Florence Drive
- Dulles Avenue and Lexington Boulevard
- Dulles Avenue and Avenue E
- Dulles Avenue and Broadmoor Drive
- Sweetwater Boulevard and Greystone Way
- Sweetwater Boulevard and Lexington Boulevard
- Sweetwater Boulevard and Town Center Boulevard South
- Williams Trace Boulevard and South Parkway
- Williams Trace Boulevard and Lexington Boulevard
Causes Of Motorcycle Accidents In Sugar LandSome recent data indicates 80 percent of motorcycle crashes result in injury or death. There are many reasons for roadway accidents involving motorcycles.
#1. Unsafe lane changesCar or truck drivers do not always see a motorcycle riding in their blind spots. Failing to indicate an impending lane change with directional signals may also cause a serious accident, especially on a busy highway or freeway.
#2. Cars turning leftCars turning left in front of an oncoming motorcycle are particularly dangerous. An accident caused by a car making a left-hand turn while a motorcycle driver travels forward results in a brutal and violent collision.
#3. Reckless drivingThe law says reckless driving is a “willful disregard for the safety of persons or property.” Reckless driving is a crime. In some instances, a person accused of reckless driving may face a fine and jail time. Weaving in and out of a driving lane is reckless driving. Some additional examples include driving:
- Well over the speed limit
- Too fast for road conditions
- While intoxicated
#4. Dooring accidentsCar door accidents generally happen in residential areas. If a driver opens the traffic side door directly into the path of a motorcycle, it will almost always throw the rider off the bike. One way to prevent this type of accident is to use the hand the farthest away from the door handle to open it. This technique is called the “Dutch Reach," and it forces one to turn the body enough to see an oncoming motorcycle.
#5. SpeedSpeeding is the leading cause of all types of motor vehicle accidents. No one is exempt from posted speed limits.
#6. Impaired drivingDrivers who cause accidents because they drove under the influence of alcohol or drugs can face both civil liability and criminal charges, from fines to jail time. Impaired reflexes can have deadly consequences. Just one drink affects judgment, reasoning, balance, coordination, social behavior, and pain tolerance.
#7. TailgatingSudden stops in moving traffic are likely to cause an accident. Inattentive drivers may follow too close to the vehicle ahead of them to stop in time to avoid a collision.
#8. InexperienceInexperienced drivers are a roadway hazard. These drivers have no frame of reference when anticipating the moves of those driving in proximity.
#9. Roadway hazardsDangerous road conditions such as broken pavement, potholes, debris, gravel, or sand may increase a motorcycle rider’s chances of losing control of their vehicle, especially when rounding a corner or curve in the road.
#10. Weather-related issuesBad weather exacerbates the dangers of poor road conditions, especially if the biker travels on worn tires with less than optimal traction. Riding at night, or in foggy weather, can make visibility a problem.
#11. Motorcycle defectsA defect in the manufacturing or a worn-out or damaged motorcycle part can cause an accident. Some areas in contention are the fuel system, brakes, and handlebars. There are many reasons to hire a personal injury lawyer. If you suffered injuries in a motorcycle accident, contact the legal team at Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers to discuss your case with one of our intake specialists. Nationally recognized for protecting the rights of injured victims. We can help you take legal action, and advocate for you to make sure you get the compensation you and your family deserve.
Common Injuries In Motorcycle AccidentsRiding a motorcycle can be exhilarating. Unfortunately, with almost no protection for the rider, we hear far too many reports of severe bodily injuries. The Insurance Institute For Highway Safety reports the number of deaths on motorcycles was nearly 29 times the number in cars. Some common injuries commonly found in motorcycle accidents, and the potential consequences include:
#1. Road rashWhen the skin is ripped and torn off the body, it is possible to experience a severe infection that can cause septic shock. This medical emergency can prove fatal if not treated immediately and appropriately.
#2. BurnsSevere burns potentially can leave a motorcycle victim with mobility issues, permanent scarring, and widespread infection.
#3. Lower extremity injuryCrush-type injuries to the legs and feet can result in bone fractures, joint, and muscle damage, loss of function, and possible amputation.
#4. Upper extremity injuryIn addition to fractures, dislocations, and joint damage, you can lose the functional use of the arm, and in worst-case scenarios, lose the arm altogether.
#5. Facial injuryPermanent scarring, disfigurement, vision problems, and tooth loss resulting from facial trauma are possible following a motorcycle accident.
#6. Chest wall and abdominal injuryAfter trauma to the chest wall and abdomen, it is common to find accident victims suffering from symptoms such as broken ribs, punctured lungs, cardiac problems, pneumonia, and hemorrhage. In addition, the injured motorcycle rider can have internal organ damage to the liver, kidneys, and spleen.
#7. Brain injuryAfter severe blows to the head, accident victims face the possibility of physical and cognitive complications– sadly, sometimes for a lifetime. There are many consequences of head injuries, including:
- Intractable headache
- Leakage of spinal cord fluid
- Problems communicating
- Vision loss
- Seizure or convulsions
- Issues with balance
- Mental confusion
#8. Spinal cord damageParalysis is frequently the result of damage to the spinal cord. Depending on the location of the injury, a victim could lose the use of arms, legs, or both. Those confined to a wheelchair often find themselves with:
- Loss of bowel or bladder control
- Frequent urinary tract infection
- Pressure sores
- Muscle atrophy
- Blood clots
- Breathing problems
- Neurological problems
- An irrational fear of getting back on a motorcycle
- Social isolation
- Mood swings
The Most Important Step to Take After a Motorcycle Accident In Sugar LandMost accident victims, especially those with any injury, will seek medical attention. The best-case scenario is to do so without delay. Not every injury is apparent at the crash scene. Although it is possible for a crash victim to feel pain immediately after a collision, concussions, spinal cord injuries, and soft tissue and internal injuries may not present for hours, or even days after the accident. The emergency room is generally where crash victims begin the healing process. There are no shortages of hospitals and health care facilities in the Sugar Land /Houston area. An ambulance will generally transport the injured victim to the closest medical facility. Documentation of any medical treatment can become important evidence in a personal injury or wrongful death claim. This includes any reports issued by emergency services personnel and first responders. Ambulance reports may well contain valuable information that could prove useful in an injury claim. We can not stress enough the importance of following through with all recommended medical tests, treatments, and re-check appointments. Treatment for severe accidents can last for an extended time, and medical care is expensive. Victims injured because of someone else’s negligence should never have to absorb the financial cost of restorative and rehabilitative care. It would be a wise decision to inform any physicians or therapists of possible intent to bring legal action against any possible responsible parties. Keep track of all appointments, and save receipts for all out-of-pocket expenses. If you need help, reach out now. Call the Stewart J. Guss Injury Accident Lawyers, speak with a trained intake coordinator, and discover how we can help you and your family recover financially. We have answers to your questions. Speaking of which:
Sugar Land Motorcycle Accident FAQsKnowing what to do following an accident can help motorcycle accident victims and their families successfully recover. Our legal team can review the particulars of your case and help develop a plan of action for navigating the legal process. We understand being a victim of an accident is a major life stressor and can result in long-lasting physical injuries and financial struggles. Taking steps to initiate legal action is a difficult decision, especially when you have unanswered questions. At Stewart J. Guss Injury Accident Lawyers, we have answers to some of the most common questions we hear from our clients, explored in further detail below.
#1. Is There a Difference Between a Motorcycle Accident Claim and a Car Accident Claim?The short answer is, yes, there are differences between a motorcycle accident claim and a car accident claim.
- Due to the actual size and the vulnerability of the rider being out in the open, physical Injuries, for the most part, are more serious for bikers than for car drivers. Without airbags, seat belts, and any outer protection, physical damage, from even minor accidents, can likely include extremely serious injuries like brain trauma, concussions, and spinal cord damage. It takes longer to treat such injuries, and it is more expensive.
- In the court of public opinion (unfortunately, this can also include members of a jury), motorcyclists are all too often stereotyped as being rebels and risk-takers
- Motorcyclists are much more susceptible to environmental and road conditions. Small patches of sand and gravel may not hinder a car driver at all but can send a motorcycle spinning out of control.
- Motorcycles react differently than an automobile does when impacted, making it difficult for law enforcement officials and witnesses to definitively say who caused the accident.
- A motorcyclist’s claim for financial compensation can sometimes be higher than an auto crash victim’s claim. Claims adjusters make their living saving money for large insurance companies. When the stakes are high the time frame from incident to settlement or trial can be significantly longer. The higher the claim the more aggressive the adjuster is likely to be.
#2. Should I Speak to The Insurance Company?After a motorcycle accident, you should report the incident to your own insurance company as soon as possible. When it comes to medical care, immediately following the incident, if you have health insurance, use those benefits to access immediate and necessary treatment. Once the at-fault party issues any payments, you will reimburse your private insurance carrier. Do not discuss the accident at all with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. The big insurance carriers pride themselves on having Johnny-on-the-spot representatives who sometimes actually show up at the accident scene. Often, they will try to communicate with the injured person to obtain statements that can mitigate their company’s liability. You are under no legal obligation to give any information. “Please give me your contact information and I will have my attorney contact you,” is a perfectly acceptable answer if an insurance company approaches you.
#3. How Much Time Do I Have to Decide About Filing a Claim?The statute of limitations in Texas for filing a motorcycle claim is two years, with few exceptions.
- If a victim is under 18, the clock does not begin until the injured party turns 18.
- If the at-fault driver was a government employee, you must initiate a claim within six months of the accident date.
#4. What Are My Responsibilities During the Claims Process?Open honest communication—A lawyer can not effectively advocate for you unless they know all the facts, not just the facts about the accident, but anything that the at-fault driver’s insurance company may use to limit or deny financial reimbursement. Follow all recommended medical directives. Keep all appointments and keep your motorcycle accident attorney up to date on any changes in your medical condition, treatment plans, or prognosis. Consider keeping a journal to record how your injuries affect your daily life. Mention these concerns to your health care providers, so they can be documented in your medical records. Do not post pictures, or discuss your case on any social media platforms. Keep all written correspondence, e-mails, and texts, you receive concerning the motorcycle accident and share them with your lawyer.
#5. How Much of My Time Will the Process Require?About two-thirds of our personal injury clients never have to schedule in-person meetings with our staff. We find the ability to remotely connect with a family is a tremendous relief for those families already dealing with inordinate stress. Thanks to the advanced technology available to the legal profession today, we can gather in-depth information about each client’s unique situation and utilize Esign to finalize the lawyer-client relationship. Of course, if a potential client feels more comfortable meeting and consulting in person, we can make that happen at the client’s convenience. It would not be out of the realm of possibility for an intake specialist from Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers to visit accident victims at their homes or even while they are in the hospital. While our clients devote all of their time and energy to recovering from physical injuries, our law firm will review all documented evidence, deal with any necessary paperwork, and interact with insurance companies, and legal and medical experts.
#6. Realistically, What Can I Expect to Recover?In Texas, an accident victim may legally seek financial restitution for any injury or property damage caused by the negligence of another person. At the law office of Stewart Guss, we help clients who sustained injuries as the result of a motorcycle accident. Our clients and their families deserve to recover for the costs of all documented and expected future health-related expenses. For example, in addition to physician, hospital, and pharmacy bills, clients may also recover the costs of rehabilitation services, any home modifications, adaptive equipment, lost wages, the value of any missed or lost raises, bonuses, or commissions. When it comes to motorcycle accidents, the injuries are more often than not severe and debilitating. Reaching an accurate assessment of the long-term financial losses associated with the inability to return to one’s chosen profession is often difficult to project. Economists, financial analysts, accountants, and life planners are often used to project the economic losses to a family when a contributing member of the household loses the ability to return to their chosen position. The projections are based on actual past financial data and projected into the future accounting for inflation, and any anticipated raises or promotions. Some Issues taken into consideration can include the injured parties:
- Educational background
- Occupation at the time of injury
- Health status before the injury
#7. What About Emotional Distress and Psychological Damage?Pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and loss of consortium are consequences of severe and debilitating physical injuries. Entire families and social support groups also sometimes bear the burden of a single life interrupted due to a traumatic event. These are just some examples of what can happen to family dynamics, relationships, and daily living routines after a catastrophic accident. Family relationships can suffer as individual members struggle to grasp the reality of the current situation. Children sometimes refuse to go to school out of fear that something will happen to them, nightmares can become regular occurrences, one spouse may need to assume the injured parties’ household responsibilities. We often hear from our clients that every aspect of their life—health, emotions, thoughts, and behavior, is changed following a motorcycle accident. They are often embarrassed, and reluctant to seek help for these issues. Our experience is that when these issues directly resulting from another person’s actions, they are compensable. Emotional trauma can lead to:
- Irrational fear
- A loss of any enjoyment
- Recurring headaches
- Sleep disturbances
- Digestive issues
- Loss of appetite
#8. Must I Release My Medical History to the Insurance Company?No. You are not required to disclose medical records. However, because a claim for damages will include the costs of medical care, the at-fault’s insurance company may request a copy. We will limit the scope of medical records released to treatments pertaining only to the injuries sustained in the accident. Consult with an attorney before signing any release of medical records form.
#9. My Family Member Died in a Motorcycle Accident. What Options Do I Have?In the case of a fatality, the deceased’s spouse, parents, or children may file a wrongful death claim. Timing is critical, as you must request benefits within three months of a wrongful death. If one of the qualified family members makes no claim, a representative of the estate may file on behalf of the family. The damages available in a wrongful death claim in Texas include:
- Burial expenses
- Lost wages
- The value of any lost benefits
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of care and services
#10. Who Can Possibly Be Held Responsible For The Accident?Anyone who contributed to the cause of a motorcycle accident can be held liable. Depending on the particular circumstances of each situation and how the accident occurred, multiple parties can share liability. The accident can result from another motorcyclist driving aggressively, or an automobile or truck driver who is fatigued, impaired, or simply not following the mandated rules of the road, such as ignoring posted speed limits. Dangerous road conditions sometimes cause motorcycle accidents. When known hazards go unremedied, city or state municipalities can and rightfully should pay. Broken or missing guardrails, long-standing potholes, and dangerous road designs are just a few examples. Mechanical defects in the motorcyclist’s bike can also contribute to an accident. Additionally, a motorcycle mechanic who recently worked on the bike can bear liability if they installed parts incorrectly. Under property liability law, a dealership may need to pay for selling a defective product.
#11. Why Should I Select Your Law Firm to Help Me and My Family?At Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers, we practice personal injury law because we want to serve clients in need. Our entire legal team truly cares about the people we represent, and we commit to putting everything we have into every case. We have the knowledge, resources, and experience to handle a wide variety of personal injury cases, and collectively we are a powerful force. When your future depends on aggressive and quality legal representation in Sugar Land, contact Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers. The legal team of Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers, is nationally recognized for protecting the rights of injured victims for more than 20 years. If you were injured in a Sugar Land motorcycle accident, call our office right now for a free consultation! Because we take all of our personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis, you will not owe us a dime unless we win your case. We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so call us today at 800-898-4877 or contact us now by clicking here. You will be glad you did. Let us help you get your life back.
See what past clients have to say:
Review: 5/5 ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
"As a relatively new resident of Houston, I did not know of an attorney to contact for a personal injury suit. I randomly went through the yellow pages contacting two attorneys that had rejected my case prior to me contacting Stewart Guss. Stewart took my case on and settled for far more than I had anticipated. The silver lining of this is that I will now have enough money to go back to school for retraining, so I will be able to reenter the workforce in a new capacity. The paralegal, Angela, was kind and supportive throughout the process. If I did not understand the legal jargon, I did not hesitate to ask, and was never once made to feel that I was incompetent. Thank you Stewart and Angela for giving me a new lease on live."