There are innumerable reasons for motorcycle accidents. Some riders are stopped at a red light when they get rear-ended by a vehicle behind them. Others are victims of debris in the road, which causes them to lose control. Still others crash when other vehicles – especially large trucks and other oversized vehicles – merge into their lane on the interstate.
But one of the most common motorcycle accidents that ever happens is known as the left-turn accident. Because this occurs so often, it’s very important to know how it works and how you may be able to avoid it.
To set the scene, imagine that you have a two-way road with a motorcycle driving one direction and another vehicle driving the other direction. The motorcyclist is not going to make a turn, but wants to continue straight and has the right of way. The other vehicle has a driver who is planning to turn left, meaning that they will cross through the lane occupied by the motorcycle.
The issue is simply that that driver doesn’t turn at the right time. If they waited for the motorcycle to go by, the accident wouldn’t take place. If they turned in front of them and there was enough space, they could turn before the motorcycle passed through.
But the driver makes an ill-advised turn without enough space, and suddenly the rider can’t avoid a crash. The vehicle that is turning completely blocks their lane and they strike the side of it. This all happens quite quickly and at high speeds, so it can lead to severe injuries or it can even be fatal.
What often happened in a situation like this is that the driver didn’t see the motorcycle. They may never have looked, they may claim it was too far away or it may have been blocked by other vehicles on the road. For whatever reason, that driver did not know that the motorcycle was there and thought they were making a safe turn until the collision.
You can sometimes avoid this as a defensive rider, simply by paying extra close attention to any vehicle that is waiting to turn. But it’s not your fault as a rider if someone turns in front of you. If you’ve suffered serious injuries and someone else was responsible, you need to know how to seek compensation.