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Does Prejudice Against Motorcyclists Exist

Do Motorcycles Cause More Accidents Than Cars in Florida?

When compared to other drivers, motorcyclists face the highest risk of severe harm and potential death should they be involved in a car accident.  This is because there is very little protection for a motorcycle rider. While the safety gear that a motorcycle rider can use is helpful in the event of a crash and it is highly recommended that motorcyclists use all available options, motorcycle safety gear is nonetheless much less effective than what passengers of cars, trucks, and other automobiles have.

Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles reports that out of the 400,431 traffic accidents that happened in 2021, 8,614 were motorcycle crashes. These crashes produced 578 fatalities and a large portion of these incidents ended in serious injuries.

If you or a loved one was injured in a Florida motorcycle accident, the Jacksonville motorcycle accident attorneys at The Law Offices of Sheftall & Associates can help you with a Florida personal injury claim for compensation. It is critical to secure as much compensation as possible to pay for your damages after a crash. This is true for any accident, but when it comes to the aftermath of motorcycle crashes, it is very common for motorcyclists to suffer catastrophic harm that requires extensive and costly medical treatment and care.

Do Other Drivers and the Police Have a Bias Against Motorcycle Riders?

Does Prejudice Against Motorcyclists ExistIf you do not ride a motorcycle, you may think that the issue of prejudice on the road against these individuals does not exist. However, if you are on the other side and you do ride a motorcycle, you know that this is not a misconception and in fact, there is plenty of bias on the road from other motorists. Ask any motorcyclist if they have experienced other drivers being rude and even acting in an unsafe manner when they are near and you will likely hear many stories of just this happening.

This anti-rider sentiment can be incredibly dangerous for motorcyclists simply because of the chances of suffering catastrophic injuries in a crash. And while there are times motorcycles take advantage of their bike’s exceptional maneuverability by speedily weaving in and out of traffic which can cause a crash, the motorcyclist is not always the reason that a crash took place. Still, in the aftermath of a motorcycle accident, it is not just the other driver involved that may choose to quickly blame the accident on the motorcycle rider. Even when law enforcement comes to the scene, they too can have a pre-existing idea about who is mostly responsible for the incident happening.

Why Do Drivers and Law Enforcement Blame Motorcyclists Disregard Motorcyclists?

Bias and disregard for motorcyclists do happen, but why other riders and law enforcement feel this way can vary. Some theories on why motorcycles do not get as much respect on the roadways include:

Recklessness

If you have driven for any amount of time you have undoubtedly seen a motorcycle riding at excessive speeds throughout traffic and being unsafe. This can easily lead you to label all motorcycle riders as reckless and therefore they are a danger to everyone else. For law enforcement, it is very likely that these professionals have seen their fair share of accidents where the motorcycle rider was responsible. Specifically in situations where the rider was irresponsibly mishandling their bike these individuals may have a tendency to believe that when a crash happens the blame is on the motorcyclist.

Tough Persona

Those that ride motorcycles are often thought of as strapping and pugnacious. As such, it can be embedded into the minds of drivers and the police that the persona of a motorcycle rider is to be a rule breaker.

Jealousy

Perhaps you have been stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic at one point or another. It can be incredibly frustrating to be traveling and trying to get to your final destination but you are unable because you are stuck in thick traffic. When you see a motorcycle riding on the shoulder or in between cars and having the ability to move in such conditions while you are at a standstill, you may develop feelings of anger and resentment. Lane splitting is not legal in Florida, but that does not mean that the police can be everywhere at all times and take action against motorcyclists ignoring the rules of the road.

Space

Motorcyclists take up little space on the road when compared to other vehicles. And even though this is so, they are entitled to the full use of their position in a lane. Sometimes drivers do not respect the use of space motorcyclists are assuming in their lane and think that they in their car have more right to the full use of the road than a motorcyclist. Also, when seeing two motorcyclists riding together a driver in a car may feel like this practice is unsafe and the motorcyclists are taking up too much space. In Florida, it is legal for two motorcyclists to drive next to each other in one lane.

Noise

Motorcycles can be very loud and some drivers may take offense to this. The noise can also be shocking for a driver when a motorcycle whizzes by and can make them feel unsafe.

Car accidents in Florida can have devastating outcomes. Victims should arm themselves with effective and competent legal support when they have been injured in a crash. The Jacksonville car accident lawyers at The Law Offices of Sheftall & Associates are here to advocate for victims who suffered injuries and losses from a traffic accident.

Speak to a Jacksonville Personal Injury Attorney Today

Florida comes in only second to the state of California for most registered motorcycles in the United States. In 2020, there were 620,077 registered motorcycles in Florida and the number of individuals buying these bikes is on the rise. It is critical that motorcycle riders understand the risk that comes with going out for a ride, and be responsible and respectful of other drivers just as other drivers should be considerate of motorcyclists. This is especially true given how much harm a motorcyclist can suffer if a crash happens.

After a Florida motorcycle accident, the experienced Jacksonville personal injury attorneys at Sheftall Law can meet with you during a free consultation to evaluate your accident experience. Call The Law Offices of Sheftall & Associates today at (904) 638-7712.