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Fatal Motorcycle Crashes on the Rise in Denver

Posted in Blog on September 28, 2015

Motorcycling is such a big part of the way of life in Colorado that even the state’s official website covers the most popular bike touring routes. The sight of a person on a motorcycle is very common on Colorado roadways, so it’s easy to assume that motorcyclists are safe there because drivers are used to sharing the road with them. Unfortunately, a recent uptick in accidents involving motorcyclists in the Mile-High City and across the entire state has proven just the opposite to be true.

According to CBS Denver, motorcyclists only make up 3 percent of the overall vehicles on the road, but they account for 18 percent of the total fatalities. The state has already lodged 45 fatal accidents involving motorcyclists this year, with two happening on the same day on Interstate 25 and Highway 85. The Colorado Department of Transportation has responded to this terrible trend by launching an ad campaign aimed at reaching motorists, who are often guilty of simply not paying enough attention to motorcycle riders on the road with them.

The causes of Colorado motorcycle accidents vary, although they usually fall under these three general groups:

  • Inattentive drivers: As noted by Sgt. Bart Trippel of the Colorado State Patrol, motorcycles are more nimble and can brake faster than other vehicles, so drivers should give them more room on the road. All too often, a driver is simply following the motorcyclist too closely and can’t react in time. Motorcycles also have a low profile, making it easier for a motorist to miss them.
  • Hazards on the road: Local and federal governments are responsible for keeping roads in good condition, but sections sometimes get ignored and hazards aren’t addressed. Typical issues such as potholes and loose asphalt can pose a real risk for riders, especially at higher speeds.
  • Lack of communication: Riders in groups need good communication and a solid signal system to avoid hazards such as lane cutting and help prevent collisions.

If you’re involved in a motorcycle accident, your first course of action should be to get medical care if needed and speak to the police. Take photos of your bike and the accident scene if possible, and get the names and numbers of any witnesses. Have a friend or family member do it for you if you’re unable to take pictures and get witness information. Document any losses from the accident, such as the cost to replace or repair of your bike, your medical expenses, and any lost work time.

Have you or someone you care about been involved in a motorcycle accident? If you need legal assistance, don’t wait. You might entitled to compensation under Colorado state law. Contact Zaner Harden Law for a confidential consultation today by calling 303-563-5354.

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