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California Motorcycle Accidents and Poor Road Conditions

All About Motorcycle Road Hazards, Accidents, and Liability

It is common for road hazards to cause motorcycle accidents. However, since a car is more stable and protected, it does not typically endure damage due to debris, faulty pavement, or small objects like a motorcycle would. If a motorcyclist gets injured in a road hazard accident, liability is determined by negligence law.

Common Road Hazards

Poor Road Conditions and Motorcycle Accidents
It is important for motorcyclists to be on the lookout for hazards such as:

  • Animals. If a motorcyclist hits an animal, it may throw their balance off. It is difficult to anticipate an animal on the road since they will randomly pop up. Even if a motorcyclist makes the attempt at avoiding the animal, they may still get into an accident. Deer are considered serious hazards due to their large size.
  • Snow and ice. It will be difficult for a motorcyclist to see where they are going in the snow. Also, during the cold weather, riding at a fast speed over ice may result in loss of control. This is why it is important for motorcyclists to pay attention to their surroundings and ride at a slow and steady rate.
  • Debris and other objects. These are capable of causing a crash. Since a motorcycle does not have as much durability and protection as a car, they will endure a strong impact when getting into contact with objects such as:
    • Branches,
    • Rocks,
    • Furniture,
    • Boxes,
    • Garbage, or
    • Food waste.
  • Faulty pavement or rough roads. Having bumpy or disfunctional roads make it hard for a motorcyclist to maintain their balance. Additionally, if a motorcyclist goes too fast while riding on gravel, they may also get into an accident if they do not have the proper skills to prevent themselves from falling off.
  • Expansion joints. This connects two road sections together. The road may separate without having any cracks. However, the uneven surface will make it likely for a motorcyclist to crash. Riders may also face potential chances of an accident during wet weather since this area can become slick.
  • Railway crossings. A motorcyclist may experience an accident by getting their tires caught in the railway track. Additionally, if the material is either wood or metal, it could make the railway track very slick during wet weather. This may cause the motorcyclist to lose balance and potentially get into a collision.
  • Still water. Hydroplaning may occur when a motorcycle is ridden through a puddle of water. Hydroplaning is when water splits up the tires from the ground, thus resulting in a loss of control. Even though motorcycle tires and treads are designed to ensure that hydroplaning does not happen, there is never really a true guarantee that it will work in every weather condition. If the motorcycle tires and treads endure more water than they normally can handle, it will result in the motorcyclist losing control of their vehicle.
  • Slippery surfaces. This hazard is very dangerous for motorcyclists. Motorcycles are more prone to sliding on the road, which could easily cause a collision. This is why motorcyclists must be aware of the rain since the entire road will be slippery.

Available Damages

Accidents happen. If you were injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. Below is a brief explanation of damages. Damages are a type of monetary award that is determined by a court of law to help compensate an aggrieved individual for any losses or injuries sustained as a result of someone’s negligence.

Economic Damages

Economic damages are intended to compensate a plaintiff for losses that a dollar amount can readily be attached to. Economic damages are calculated by determining the amount of out-of-pocket losses an aggrieved individual has or will expect to incur as a result of their injuries.

A few examples of economic losses include:

  • Loss of Earning Capacity
  • Medical Bills
  • Lost Wages

Non-Economic Damages

Non-economic damages are essentially intended to cover losses that are thought of as subjective and will not necessarily cover out-of-pocket losses. Non-economic damages may include compensation for:

  • Emotional Distress
  • Pain and Suffering
  • Loss of Enjoyment of Life

Punitive Damages

The third type of damages a California court may award are known as punitive damages. Punitive damages are intended as punishment and are only awarded when a defendant’s behavior is especially harmful. Punitive damages are relatively rare and in fact were only incorporated in 5 percent of all verdicts.

Furthermore, there is no real set standard for calculating and awarding punitive damages. Punitive damages are awarded at the court’s discretion and will vary depending on the specific circumstances of a case.

Contact West Coast Trial Lawyers to Find Out How We Can Help

If you have sustained injuries in the city of Los Angeles as a result of a motorcycle accident, an attorney at our firm can  help you recover financial compensation for the losses you have suffered, including medical bills, property damage, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Call West Coast Trial Lawyers today at (213) 927-3700 or email [email protected] to schedule a free consultation with our experienced, caring, and compassionate legal team.


If you have been injured in an accident, you can count on the legal team at West Coast Trial Lawyers to fight for your rights every step of the way. Contact us today to schedule your free case evaluation with a personal injury attorney.
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