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Driving a car requires little physical fitness. You get behind the wheel, you start your engine and you go where you need to go. Driving a motorcycle isn’t so simple. A motorcycle requires balance, and balance requires strength. A person who can’t control their bike is a danger to themselves and others on the road.

Picture this scenario: You are driving your motorcycle and feel it begin to tip. You plant your foot and do what you can to stabilize your bike. You lack the physical strength to hold it up, and you lay it down. Could it have been avoided? Quite possibly.

Getting into better shape can help keep you on two wheels longer. For many people, age-related declines in physical fitness have them giving up riding before they are ready. By staying fit, you will be able to enjoy the open road for years to come.

1. Work Out

How and when you workout is up to you. Some people find that they don’t have the time or desire to join a gym. The good news is that there are DVDs and even apps that can help you develop your fitness. If you don’t want to workout in your living room, hop on a bike and take a ride. Put the leash on the dog and go for a walk. There are a variety of ways that you can put a workout routine together.

2. Build Endurance

Building endurance will allow you to ride your motorcycle for longer periods of time. How you develop that endurance depends on your current state of health, but it should include increasing your heart rate. Start slow and increase your exercise over a period of weeks and months. Take your pulse and count your heartbeats per minute. A good goal is between 65 and 75 percent of your resting rate. Try to maintain this range for 10 minutes during your first workouts and longer in your subsequent ones.

3. Strength

You want to build the strength in your core, thighs and forearms. Weight training is the easiest way to build muscle, but any resistance activity will do. Yard work, swimming and even playing sports will help to build your strength. Here’s a good rule of thumb: When you take on resistance training, you will feel it in your muscles. It’s time to increase your weights when you don’t feel the burn any longer.

Anyone who has not been involved in any type of fitness program should speak with their doctor before undertaking a new regimen. Your medical provider can help you determine the healthiest amount of exercise for your age, body type and current state of health.

If you are involved in a motorcycle accident in Charlotte, reach out to our team of experienced accident attorneys. We will review the details of your accident at no cost to you and advise you of your legal options. Call today to schedule your free case evaluation.

When you are out riding your motorcycle, chances are that you are paying close attention to the behaviors of others around you. You worry about other vehicles seeing you, and you stay out of the blind spots of truckers. Do you worry about road hazards?

Most motorcyclists know to avoid potholes and loose gravel, but those who are less experienced might not consider other hazards that are on the roads. Read on to discover how to stay safe on your bike when out on the open road.

1. Slick Surfaces

When rain or snow falls, it makes sense that the roads may be slick. Some don’t consider that slick roads can also be caused by heavy fog or even early-morning dew. Regardless of the reason for the slippery roadway, there are things you can do to maneuver safely.

The first thing you want to do on slick surfaces is reduce your speed. It will take you longer to stop when the roads are slick so slow down. Your front brake is responsible for most of the braking power of your motorcycle, but on slick surfaces you should use both brakes equally.

As far as your path of driving, stick to the areas that are most clear. Water tends to build up on the side of the road and, in many areas, the center of the lane can be just as dangerous. Keep this in mind when you are deciding where to drive.

2. High Winds

Strong winds can come up suddenly and be difficult to drive through. A strong gust of wind can push your bike over faster than you can react. When the winds are high, follow these tips to stay upright.

Stick to the side of the lane that allows you the most room to maneuver. Stay far enough behind and away from other vehicles that you can steer safely should you be pushed by the wind. Sit upright on your motorcycle, hold onto both hand grips, and keep your feet firmly planted on the pegs. If you have the ability to do so, steer into the wind.

3. Riding Over Objects

You may find yourself in a situation where you have no choice but to ride over an object in the road. If this is the case, hold onto the hand grips, keep your front wheel straight, and rise up slightly. These things will help you absorb the shock of driving over the object.

There are some things that you cannot prepare for when you are driving a motorcycle. Weather can change quickly and hazards can appear seemingly out of nowhere. You will be better prepared for these things if you know how to react ahead of time.

If you are involved in a motorcycle accident in Charlotte or the surrounding areas, reach out to our team of experienced motorcycle accident attorneys for a free case evaluation. We will advise you of your legal options and help you make the best decisions for your unique situation.

Pfc. Emmanuel Pickett, age 20, died from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident. The soldier, originally from Smackover, Arkansas, was stationed at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. He was assigned to E Battery, 3rd Battalion, 4th Air Defense Artillery Regiment, 108th Air Defense Artillery Brigade.

Pfc. Pickett’s accident occurred in his home state near the city of El Dorado. Details of his accident were not immediately released. It is known that he joined the army in 2013 and trained at Fort Sill in Oklahoma. He was assigned to Fort Bragg and his brigade in 2014.

While in the Army, Pfc. Pickett received several awards and decorations, including the Army Achievement Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service medal, the Parachutist Badge, and the National Defense Service Medal. He is survived by his wife, mother and stepfather.

Even though the facts surrounding the accident have not been released, the accident should serve as a reminder to everyone. The weather is heating up and motorcycles will be on the road in greater numbers. If you are behind the wheel of a car, stay extra vigilant for these two-wheeled vehicles. Here are just a few safety tips:

1. Windows

Keep your windows rolled down at least part of the way when you can. This makes it easier to hear motorcycles that you may not be able to see.

2. Radio

Keep your radio turned down. This not only allows you to hear motorcycles, but emergency vehicles as well.

3. Surroundings

Stay aware of your surroundings. Don’t rely on your mirrors when switching lanes or backing up. Always turn your head to look. Even though most are loud, you may not be aware that a motorcycle is nearby unless you look.

4. Distance

Do not tailgate a motorcycle. If the rider in front of you has an accident or falls off their bike, riding too closely could mean disaster.

If you are involved in a motorcycle accident in North Carolina, you may be entitled to compensation for property damage and injury. Call our office today and let us provide you with a free case evaluation. We will tell you what compensation you may file a claim for. Call now.

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motorcycle accidentThe first few weeks after a brain injury can be worrisome. Victims often experience swelling, bleeding or changes in brain chemistry. These issues can affect the way that brain tissue functions. While many people improve from brain injuries, some do not. How a person recovers depends on the injury and the individual.

Despite the difficulty in determining exactly how a patient will recover, there are generalities that can be considered. Typically, people experience the greatest amount of recovery within two years of the injury. After this, recovery may halt or slow dramatically. It is not to say that a person cannot return to full function, but that they may be very slow to do so.

When a person is recovering from a traumatic brain injury after a motorcycle or any other type of accident, medical professionals rate their recovery using the Rancho Los Amigos Levels of Cognitive Functioning. This scale is as follows:

Level 1: No response.

Level 2: Responses are not consistent and not directly in response to stimuli.

Level 3: Responses are inconsistent but in response to stimuli.

Level 4: Patient experiences agitation and confusion.

Level 5: Patient is confused and inaccurately responds to commands.

Level 6: Patient is confused but responds accurately to given commands.

Level 7: Person can go about day with minimal confusion.

Level 8: Memory is functioning and patient is responsive to environment.

Level 9: Patient can function but is aware of need for assistance.

Level 10: Patient can function but may need extended time or compensatory strategies.

After two years, most people who have suffered a traumatic brain injury show decreases in disability. Many live in private residences and are employed. It is not unusual for people to require some type of supervision during the day or night.

This is not intended to be legal advice or indicative of all patients. If you or a loved one has suffered a traumatic brain injury, the best source of health information is a medical professional.

If you need a personal injury lawyer in North Carolina due to a traumatic brain injury, call our office today. A member of our team will review the details of your case at no cost to you and advise you of your options. Call now or browse our website for more information about our firm and how we can assist you.

motorcycle accident

ATVs, or all-terrain vehicles, are popular in North Carolina. People use ATVs for recreation, sport and even work. If you own one of these machines, it is important that you are familiar with the laws surrounding them to keep yourself both safe and out of trouble with the law. Here is a general explanation of ATV laws in the state.

Age Restrictions

Children under the age of eight years old are not permitted to operate an ATV. Children between the ages of 8 and 12 are not permitted to operate an ATV with an engine larger than 70 cubic centimeters. Larger ATVs are permissible for children between the ages of 12 and 16, but the engine must still be smaller than 90 cubic centimeters.

While children are permitted to operate these vehicles, they must do so under constant supervision. Any child under the age of 16 must be supervised by someone 18 or over.

Passengers

Carrying a passenger is a great time. That said, you are legally not allowed to ride with a passenger if your ATV was not built to do so. Do not ride with someone on the handlebars, in front of you on the seat or otherwise on the ATV if it is not designed for two people.

Equipment

The ATV that you drive must have a working brake system. It must also have a muffler system that is in proper working condition. Be sure that your vehicle is equipped with a spark arrester that is working properly. This is a requirement of the United States Forest Service.

Prohibited Acts

You may not:

  • Operate your ATV on a public street without eye protection and a helmet;
  • Allow someone to operate your vehicle on a public street without eye protection and a helmet;
  • Drive recklessly;
  • Drive on the interstate or a highway; or
  • Drive after sunset or before sunrise or any other time visibility is significantly reduced.

Additionally, if you were born after 1990, you are required to have passed a safety training class and possess a certificate of completion. Should you violate any of these laws, you may be subject to a fine of not more than $200.

If you are involved in an ATV accident in North Carolina, call our team of dedicated personal injury attorneys. We will provide you with a free case evaluation and advise you of your options. Call now.

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Motorcycle-AccidentMotorcycle accident are not unusual. While they don’t occur more frequently than other vehicle collisions, they are perhaps more fatal than others. According to the U.S. government, for every mile traveled in 2006, there were more deaths from motorcycle accidents than any other type of accident.

Because of these statistics, motorcyclists are urged to reduce their level of risk. In order to do this, knowing the top causes of motorcycle accidents is helpful. Here are the things that cause the majority of these crashes.

1. Head-On Collisions

When a motorcycle collides head-on with another vehicle on the road, there is more than a 50 percent chance that the motorcyclist will be killed. While the vehicle’s driver may be injured, they are less likely to be killed in the crash than the person on the bike.

2. Left-Hand Turns

When cars make left-hand turns, motorcyclists should be extra vigilant. In all of the motorcycle versus car accidents recorded, 42 percent occurred because a car was making a left hand turn. In many cases, the motorcyclist was traveling straight through an intersection at the time of the accident.

3. Lane Splitting

The practice of lane splitting can be a dangerous one. This occurs when a motorcyclist decides to drive between slow-moving or stopped vehicles. This maneuver makes it more difficult for the motorcyclist to navigate traffic. In addition, drivers of cars and other vehicles are not expecting to see a motorcycle next to them and may not be as attentive before they attempt to move in or out of traffic.

4. Speed and Alcohol

Speed and alcohol are also contributing factors in motorcycle accidents. About half of all single-motorcycle crashes can be attributed to speeding or alcohol use. Because a driver is less protected than one in a vehicle, these crashes most often lead to serious injury or death.

5. Fixed Objects

Accidents involving fixed objects account for about 25 percent of all motorcycle deaths. When a motorcycle collides with a stationery object, the driver is likely to be thrown from the bike. This results in a higher rate of death than for drivers of vehicles who hit fixed objects.

Motorcyclists face a variety of hazards on the road. If you are involved in a motorcycle accident in North Carolina, call our team of personal injury attorneys. We will review the details of your case at no cost to you. Call now.

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Men-riding-Harley-MotorcyclesThe state of North Carolina has many laws on the books that relate to motorcycles. In general, these laws are enforced to keep motorcyclists safe. They also serve to keep passengers and other drivers on the road out of harm’s way. These laws pertain to licensure, the use of roadways, and inspections. Here is a brief rundown of the laws every motorcycle operator must know.

Definition

A motorcycle, as defined by law, is a vehicle designed to travel on three or fewer wheels. Motor scooters and motorized bicycles are included in this definition. Mopeds are defined under their own category.

Licensure

If you want to drive a motorcycle on any road in the state, you must have one of the following:

  • A provisional license with a motorcycle learner’s permit
  • A driver’s license with a motorcycle learner’s permit
  • A provisional license with a motorcycle endorsement
  • A driver’s license with a motorcycle endorsement

Additionally, your motorcycle must have a license plate securely attached in a horizontal fashion.

Lights, Horns and Mirrors

Every motorcycle on the road must be equipped with a working brake light. The brake may be operated by hand or foot. Under normal conditions, your bike’s horn must be audible from no less than 200 feet away. Your bike must also be equipped with a rearview mirror that allows you to see at least 2,000 feet behind you.

Your motorcycle must also have at least one headlamp that is lit at all times, no matter if it is day or night. Your license plate must also be well lit.

Helmets

North Carolina is among several states in the country that require that a driver wears a helmet. Your passengers must also have protection on their heads. Your helmet must be “compliant” with the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 218.

Motorcyclists are also ruled by the same laws as those operating four-wheeled vehicles. You are bound to the same laws regarding speeding, stop lights and the like. If you have any questions as to the laws pertaining to motorcycles in our state, you can click here for more information.

If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident in North Carolina, we want to assist you. Reach out to our team of personal injury attorneys today for a free case evaluation. We are here to help you and your family. Call now.

download (74)A woman has died from a motorcycle accident in Rock Hill on Highway 5 on Saturday. The York County Coroner has identified the victim in the two-car crash as Fellicia Mallohan, 52.  Mallohan, a resident of Pineville, North Carolina, was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash.

According to investigators, Mallohan was riding a Harley Davidson when she crashed into a 2001 Chevrolet Tahoe at approximately 2:30 p.m. Mallohan was not wearing a helmet at the time of the accident and was she was thrown from the motorcycle she was riding.

The SUV driver was wearing a seat belt.

Serious injuries or even death can sometimes be caused as a result motor vehicle accidents.  Motorcyclists are especially vulnerable because they are more exposed to both the elements and the hazards of the road.  Riders should always wear a helmet and other protection gear to stay safe. And remember, motorcycles are everywhere.

If you or someone you love has been involved in and injured in an accident involving a motorcycle or other motor vehicle, give the offices of Auger & Auger a call. Our practice focuses on personal injury cases and we have years of experience in helping clients received compensation for their injuries.

Contact us today for a free consultation.

What do you know about riding a motorcycle? What you believe to be true and what is actual fact may surprise you. There is no shortage of myth and misconception surrounding motorcycles, their riders, and their operation. Here are 10 safety myths that you may have bought stock in.

The louder your pipes, the safer you are. According to research, your loud pipes make no difference when it comes to your level of safety. In fact, bikes with modified exhaust systems are involved in more crashes than those without. If you want to be loud, be loud visually with bright helmets and light-colored clothing.

Helmets break necks. It makes sense, in theory, that the heavier your head, the more likely you are to break your neck in an accident. People who wear helmets suffer fewer neck injuries than those who do not because the helmet absorbs force.

Helmets hinder vision and hearing. Wearing a properly-designed, correctly-fitting helmet does not impeded your sense of hearing or vision. There is really nothing else to say.

Helmets do not help in the majority of collisions. Most impacts happen at low speeds. Most helmets are tested at impacts occurring at low speeds. This does not mean, however, that a high-speed impact will cause your helmet to fail. You are more likely to survive a crash wearing a helmet. Period.

You can handle any situation given enough skill. It stands to reason that the more experienced you are, the more likely you are to be able to handle anything the road throws at you. Do not rely on your skill and experience. Doing so can make you behave recklessly on your bike.

Laying it down is safer. You are far better to brake and collide with a vehicle at low speeds than you are to lay it down. When you collide, you may be thrown over the vehicle or even backwards into the air. When you lay it down, you either come to a full and very rapid stop against the vehicle or you become wedged tightly under it.

One drink is okay. No. It’s not.

Streets are safer than the highway. In all actuality, highways are safer than streets as all the traffic is traveling in the same direction at a similar speed. You are better off to take the highway when given the option.

Anti-lock brakes are dangerous. Just the opposite. ABS systems can help you in a panic-braking situation more than you think. You are less likely to lock up your bike when you choose one with an ABS system.

Other drivers don’t care about you. Yes they do. Many do not think about motorcyclists simply because they do not know anyone. Do not assume, however, that this ignorance equates a lack of care or concern.

If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, please reach out to our compassionate attorneys. We are here to fight for your rights and get you the compensation that you deserve. Call us today.

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Parade of Motorcycles

When it comes to operating a motorcycle safely, the Governor of North Carolina takes things seriously. So seriously, in fact, that the Governor’s Highway Safety Program and the N.C. State Highway Patrol have partnered to bring riders the BikeSafe North Carolina program.

The program is open to motorcyclists and offers a variety of skill lessons and assessments in order to make North Carolina roads and highways safer for everyone. Classes and assessments are offered in Raleigh and other cities across the state.

Rider Skills Days
Rider skills days offer assessment on your present motorcycling skills. You can also learn about motorcycle control, factors that contribute to collisions, and professional riding techniques. Classes are offered in Raleigh on March 20, April 17, May 1, May 29, and throughout the rest of the year. A full listing of classes can be found here.

One of the best ways to stay safe on the road is to constantly improve your riding skill. Classes are offered both on- and off-road. To take part in a class, you need your own registered motorcycle, a helmet, eye protection, current license with endorsement, proof of insurance, and the proper clothing.

Typical Agenda
While some classes may stray from course due to participation and discussion, classes follow a typical agenda:

  •  Morning classroom session
  • Short ride (45 minutes)
  • Lunch
  • Afternoon classroom session
  • Long ride (Approximately 2 hours)
  • Last classroom session
  • Dismissal

If there is someone who regularly rides with you as a passenger, feel free to bring them along. They must wear the same protective gear as the driver in order to actively participate.

It’s FREE!
Many people are surprised to discover that the BikeSafe program is free to anyone who wishes to register and participate. The goal of the course is not to raise money for any agency. Instead, the goal is to make the streets safer for everyone, reducing injury and death.

It is recommended that riders take a course once a year. This helps every person that operates a bike to sharpen their skills and reduce their chance of collision. If you own and operate a motorcycle, it is in your best interest to register for an upcoming class.

If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a motorcycle accident, our compassionate attorneys can help you. Contact us at your earliest convenience so that we may begin putting together a case for you. We are here to help you get the compensation that you deserve. Call now.

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