Of all the motor vehicles on the road, motorcycles are the least safe. They are less stable and less visible than four-wheeled vehicles. They also lack the protection systems of cars and trucks such as bumpers, protective “cages,” seatbelts, and airbags. The only safety system motorcyclists have is their protective gear, riding skills, and their mindset. Unfortunately, the mindset of some motorcyclists greatly increases their injury and fatality risk. Here are two psychological factors that cause motorcycle accidents:
Riding With the Wrong Attitude
The wrong attitude distorts clear thinking and risk assessments. For example, youthful cockiness causes a relatively inexperienced motorcyclist to take risks that exceed the person’s ability. The rider lacks the skills and experience to back up their extreme confidence. This phenomenon usually occurs among young riders who are often male. The person hasn’t been in an accident yet and has no conception of the violence and life-altering consequences of motorcycle accidents. Some of these riders feel that accidents only happen to other people.
Another type of attitude problem is complacency. This often happens among motorcyclists with many years of experience under their belt. They’ve either never been in a motorcycle accident or haven’t had one in recent years. Although they are highly skilled, they’ve lost their “edge.” That is, they no longer put forth the mental focus required to ride defensively. Years of complacent riding have desensitized them to the risks of their activity. They ride as though the experience were a walk in the park. Because they’ve been accident-free so far, they believe the trend will continue indefinitely. This disconnect with reality continues until their luck runs out.
Riding Like a Motorist Drives
This is a common newbie mistake. Some motorcyclists learn to ride several years after learning to drive, and many of their driving habits spill over into their riding. One habit is assuming that everyone on the road sees them. When they have the right of way, they don’t look for motorists who might blindly make a left turn into them or might pull into the road and cut them off.
When stopped at intersections, they aren’t concerned about getting rear-ended by a motorist. This is a product of years of driving a car where a low-speed rear-end accident is nothing more than a fender bender. However, a fender bender for a motorcyclist can mean getting crushed between the stopped car in front and the negligent motorist rear-ending him from behind.
If in spite of your careful riding, a negligent or reckless driver injured you in a motorcycle accident, don’t hesitate to speak to lawyers who will fight to get the compensation you deserve. Contact us at Hogan Injury.