Types of Motorcycle Accidents

Common Types of Motorcycle Accidents in Washington

There’s nothing quite like riding a motorcycle—the rush of the road, the feeling of freedom and joy it gives, a complete sensory experience that taps into our innate desire for thrill. On the practical side, many find that riding a motorcycle is a convenient means of transportation when it comes to commuting or parking. It also requires immense skill and training, providing a fun challenge for some motorcyclists.

Regardless of what type of motorcycle you have or why you’ve chosen to ride one, Evergreen Motorcycle Attorneys educates our clients in motorcycle safety and awareness. If you operate a motorcycle, you should understand the most common types of motorcycle accidents and what you can do to protect yourself.

If any of these incidents happen to you, set up a complimentary consultation with one of our motorcycle accident attorneys. We can help you figure out the appropriate next steps to your Washington motorcycle injury case.

Open Door or Dooring
Among the many dangers that motorcyclists might face on the road, one of the more overlooked types of motorcycles accidents are caused by a suddenly opened car or truck door. The best way to prevent a dooring accident is to simply be aware of your surroundings and proximity next to other vehicles. Be sure to ride with extreme caution around congested areas, especially near parked cars and pedestrians.

A no-contact motorcycle accident occurs when a motorist causes a motorcyclist to crash without physically hitting the bike. This is often the result of the motorcyclist maneuvering out of the way to avoid an impending accident. Drivers are required to obey traffic laws, which includes being aware of all other motorists on the road. A motorcyclist can file a personal injury claim in a no-contact accident if they can prove the other driver was negligent and caused the crash.

Left-turn Collision
The Insurance Institute for National Highway Safety estimates reports that 42 percent of two-vehicle fatal motorcycle crashes involved a vehicle turning left while the motorcycle was going straight, passing or overtaking the vehicle. The motorcycle’s smaller size often makes it less visible to other motorists in a turning vehicle. These kinds of collisions are among the most impactful and likely result in serious damage to the rider and the bike. When approaching an intersection, always come to a complete stop and assume that oncoming cars will turn left at the intersection, even if they are not signaling a turn.

Head-on Collision
Head-on collisions occur when the front ends of two vehicles collide into each other. It should come as no surprise that head-on collisions between a motorcycle and a car are often fatal for the motorcyclist. Even with proper safety gear, motorcyclists are at a huge disadvantage in the event of a head-on collisions because riders are essentially unprotected from the impact. 

The National Safety Council recommends to use the “The Four R’s” when trying to avoid a head-on collision:

  • Read the road ahead
  • Drive to the Right
  • Reduce your speed
  • Ride off the road

Rear-end Collision
A rear-end collision can be particularly dangerous for a motorcyclist since they often cannot take evasive action to prepare themselves or prevent the collision from occurring. Due to the size of the motorcycle, even a minor bump from a larger vehicle can send a bike into oncoming traffic or cause severe damage to the motorcyclist. In most cases, it is the driver of the vehicle following behind is at fault. There are a variety of possible contributing factors, such as distracted driving, drunk driving, speeding and tailgating.