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South Carolina is a beautiful state with open roadways, which virtually call out to motorcycle enthusiasts. Unfortunately, our Columbia motorcycle accident attorney knows that these ‘joy rides’ don’t always end as planned. Auger & Auger is also well aware that the motorcycle driver isn’t always the one who is injured. In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 336 passengers were killed in motorcycle crashes in 2016 and 55.1% of them were not wearing helmets.
When we think of this type of accident, we envision crumpled cars and shattered bikes — which is not necessarily an accurate picture. NHTSA statistics show that 23% of fatal collisions involve fixed objects. This percentage is higher than that for any other vehicle type. Additional data shows that 33% of riders were speeding at the time of their fatal collision.
Allowing a passenger to ride with you is a life-or-death responsibility that can’t be taken lightly. Any operator who carries a passenger without having an idea of the way an extra body will change the ride may be making a fatal mistake.
As a Columbia motorcycle accident attorney knows, riders need to be taught to control their bikes with passengers onboard. The way a motorcycle handles is completely changed by the addition of another human body. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation suggests that riders be aware of the following points before letting another person settle onto your rear seat:
The Department of Motor Vehicles has also weighed in on how to prepare for a passenger, and they suggest making sure that your guest follows these guidelines:
The act of carrying a passenger on your motorcycle is not illegal — but you could be breaking the rules of the road and not know it. The South Carolina code of law has specific regulations regarding passengers of which not all riders may be aware. Failing to abide by one of these regulations could result in a citation for you, your guest, or the both of you.
No one expects that getting on the back of a motorcycle could be a life-changing event, but regrettably it happens. When a passenger is wounded in the collision, they may suffer traumatic injuries to the head, spine, or limbs. We don’t believe that an afternoon of recreation should turn into years of physical and emotional pain or financial distress.
At Auger & Auger, we have dedicated ourselves to the rights of victims. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, we will fight for your right to compensation. We offer a zero-fee guarantee and work on a contingency basis so your ability to afford an attorney doesn’t have to factor into your decision to get help.
Call (803) 470-5298 today for your free consultation, with no fees due until recovery!