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5 Safety Tips to Avoid Motorcycle Accidents in Florida

Every time you turn on the news, there are new reports of catastrophic motorcycle accidents. An early morning crash in Miami left six dead in August. After a car stopped to help a motorcyclist involved in a minor accident, a van swerved onto the shoulder, hitting the car and several people standing on the side of Motorcycle Accidentsthe road. The van collided with another stopped car, pushing it into the motorcycle. In total, the crash left six people dead. The van driver was arrested for DUI manslaughter, DUI with serious bodily injury, DUI with property damage, and resisting arrest.

Unfortunately, motorcycle accidents frequently have fatal outcomes. Taking extra care while on the road could help you avoid becoming a statistic.

  1. Dress to Be Seen

Many motorcyclists report feeling invisible to drivers. As a motorcyclist, you should dress in bright colors and use accessories that make you more visible to other motorists. If you drive at night, consider clothing with reflective material. It’s clear that wearing a helmet is one of the best ways to protect yourself as a biker – take it one step further and pick a pattern or color that other drivers can’t miss.

  1. Avoid Driving While Tired

Fatigued driving is a major cause of car and motorcycle accidents. Since your motorcycle leaves you exposed to a greater risk of injury and death, be extremely mindful while on the road. Driving while tired can lead to longer reaction times, putting you at serious risk of a crash.

  1. Leave Room for an Escape Route

It’s impossible to predict what the drivers behind you are going to do, which is why you should always leave yourself an out. When stopping behind a car at a stoplight, leave enough space to switch lanes if the vehicle behind you doesn’t stop. Rear-end accidents can be minor for cars, but they’re often much more dangerous for motorcyclists.

  1. Always Be Aware of the Vehicles Around You

Ideally, everyone on the road would be vigilant and aware of other drivers. Since that isn’t always the case, you must be extra cautious while riding. Watch the vehicles in your vicinity and keep an eye out for any erratic driving patterns. This allows you to move away from drivers who appear to be distracted. Look for those whose eyes are glued to their phones and stay far away.

  1. Keep an Eye on Road Conditions

While scanning the road for unsafe or inattentive drivers, take an extra second to check out the asphalt. Look for gravel or sand, which could get in your eyes and block your vision. Spilled oil, antifreeze, and fuel can create a slippery roadway, so watch out for shiny pavement.

Let Us Take on Your Motorcycle Accident Case

Even when you take every possible precaution, motorcycle accidents happen. Don’t try to work with insurance companies on your own. Instead, let us advocate for you as you heal and recuperate. Call Fetterman & Associates at (561) 666-9850 for a free case evaluation.

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What You Need to Know About Motorcycle Accidents in Florida

Motorcycle Accident LawyersMotorcycle accidents are a startlingly frequent occurrence on the nation’s roads. In fact, almost 5,000 people died in motorcycle accidents in 2017. The fatality rate for motorcycles is 28 times higher than passenger vehicles, and according to the Governors Highway Safety Association, motorcyclists make up 14% of all motor vehicle-related fatalities nationwide.  In Florida, 18% of traffic fatalities in 2014 were motorcyclists.

Contributing Factors in Motorcycle Accidents 

There are multiple reasons that motorcycle accidents are more common and often more serious than crashes involving other types of motor vehicles. Alcohol impairment is a prominent factor in many crashes, and 25% of motorcyclists involved in fatal accidents in 2016 had a blood alcohol content (BAC) above the legal limit. Cell phones and other distractions can also make it harder for motorcyclists and drivers of passenger vehicles to stay focused, which puts riders at greater risk.

Another risk – and one that motorcyclists can’t control – is how drivers of other vehicles handle themselves on the road. Motorcyclists often report that drivers don’t notice them on the roadways or look for them when changing lanes. Reports have found that close to two-thirds of motorcycle accidents happen when a driver violates a rider’s right of way. As a result, motorcyclists are required to take evasive action to avoid crashes.

While many states have public education programs in place to remind drivers to watch out for motorcyclists, change is slow going, especially during a time when distracted driving is on the rise.

Tips for Staying Safe 

While you can’t change how other people drive, you can take extra steps to protect yourself. Remaining vigilant can decrease your risk of being involved in a crash.

  • Wear a Helmet. Using proper protective head gear, eyewear, and a face shield can protect you from head injuries during a crash.
  • Ride Defensively. Assume that the cars around you don’t see you and aren’t paying attention. Remaining aware of their actions can help you take evasive action in time to avoid an accident.
  • Follow All Traffic Rules and Pay Attention to Signs. Give yourself extra time to get to work, appointments, and other obligations.
  • Attach Reflective Tape to Your Clothing. Reflective tape makes you more visible to drivers, especially if you’re driving at night.
  • Stay Focused and Avoid Distractions. Don’t drive while under the influence or if you’re feeling drowsy. Focus your attention on the road, as well as the people around you.
  • Keep Your Motorcycle in Top Condition. Get your motorcycle checked out by a licensed mechanic on a regular basis. Replace tires and perform other maintenance tasks as recommended. 

Have You Been Involved in a Motorcycle Accident? 

The effects of a motorcycle accident can last years, from the physical impact of the crash to the mental and emotional stress of its aftermath. Experienced representation is essential when motorcycle accidents affect you or someone you love. Call Fetterman & Associates at (561) 316-2746 to discuss the specifics surrounding your accident, as well as a free evaluation of your case.

Essential Motorcycle Safety Tips

May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, so here are some Motorcycle safety tips. Motorcycle-related deaths have risen significantly since 2000. This is not surprising, given that motorcycle ownership is at an all-time high.  At Fetterman & Associates, we know that all too often, motorcyclists are on the losing end of a motorcycle/car crash. We remind drivers to start seeing motorcycles!

Motorcycle Crash Statistics

In 2015 alone, almost 5,000 motorcycle riders and passengers were killed in Motorcycle Safety Tipscrashes.  Furthermore, 88,000 suffered nonfatal injuries.  While motorcycles only make up 3 % of registered vehicles, motorcyclists account for 14 % of all traffic fatalities in the United States.In 2015, speeding was a factor in about a third of motorcycle crash fatalities. In 2014, alcohol impairment was a factor in almost a third of all fatalities in motorcycle cases.

Car Drivers Don’t See Motorcycles

Most of the time, when motorcycles and cars collide, the driver of the car is the one violating the motorcyclist’s right of way, according to the National Highway Transportation Safety Association (NHTSA). Some of the factors cited for motor vehicle drivers overlooking motorcycles include:

  • Because motorcyclists make up a relatively small portion of the drivers on the road, motor vehicle drivers aren’t used to seeing them;
  • Motorcycles are smaller targets, and may be obscured more easily;
  • Drivers don’t anticipate the movement of motorcyclists; and
  • Drivers of cars can be distracted due to texting, talking with passengers, or other distracted driving conduct.

Of note, studies show that people who ride motorcycles, as well as people who have family and close friends who ride, are less likely to get into accidents with motorcyclists. Scientists believe this is because these motorists have a heightened awareness of the dangers their loved ones’ face.  This fact suggests all motorists could be trained to increase their awareness of motorcycles.

Re-Entry Riders are at Risk

“Re-Entry Riders,” those who ride motorcycles in the 20s and have decided to begin riding again in their late 40s to 60s may find additional challenges. The traffic patterns have increased in the past 20 to 40 years. There are more distracted drivers on the road.  These factors may contribute to the fact riders 50 years of age and older comprised 35 % of all motorcycle fatalities in 2015.  Returning to motorcycle riding is not “just like riding a bike.”  Old skills must be re-learned, and riders must also be committed to learning new skills each time they ride.  A good motorcyclist recognizes there is always room for improvement and learning opportunities.

If You Have Been Injured

As a motorcyclist, if you have been injured in a crash, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.  This could include lost wages, past and future medical bills, pain and suffering, and even replacement of your motorcycle, depending on the circumstances of your accident.  However, there is a time limit on filing a claim. Don’t wait and wonder. Contact Fetterman & Associates to discuss your accident, your injuries, and your plans for the future. The call is free. We meet with potential clients at no cost.  Additionally, we don’t charge a fee unless we win your case.  You have nothing to lose.  Call us today.

Highway Safety: 5 Tips to Avoid Truck Accidents

It is a no-brainer that truck accidents can cause rather devastating and lasting injuries.

truck accidents

According to a report issued by the United States Department of Transportation, close to 3,964 people died and over 95,000 were injured in crashes that involved commercial and other large trucks in the year 2013. However, like most other accidents, truck accidents can be prevented. Listed below are a few tips to avoid truck accidents.

Driving Tips to Help Prevent Truck Accidents

Once you have managed to pass the driving training program and your company gives you the keys to drive your own rig, you are bound to be faced with a set of challenges. This is why we have put together a few pointers that will help you start out on your own as a solo driver.

  • Move Slowly: You are now a professional truck driver. But, this doesn’t mean you can start racing on the roads. The very first rule is to take your time and to do whatever you are doing not just methodically, but also safely. Whether you are pulling in or out of a yard, coming or going from a quick truck stop, or backing your truck into a loading truck – move slowly.
  • Be Thorough and Double Check: Ensure that you have covered all your bases and there is absolutely nothing that you are forgetting while backing out or executing a wide turn – even on a highway. Even experienced truck drivers often fail to check blind spots and conduct a complete circle check. Keep your eyes glued to your entire vehicle while reversing on a highway to be sure there are no obstacles.
  • Do not Trust Your Spotter Blindly: If you have a spotter, remember that 9 out of 10 times, he is watching only one part of your truck. It is likely that he is not looking out for overhead clearance or watching your front right corner. Though his intentions may be good, it is best that you do not trust him blindly. Get out of your truck every now and then to have a look for yourself, especially if you are blindsiding in, when there is the risk of a truck accident.

Driving Tips for Other Vehicles

Most commercial trucks have larger blind spots than a traditional passenger vehicle. Though it is not possible to totally avoid blind spots, you must make an effort to limit your time in a blind spot, when the risks of a truck accident are high.

Most experienced truck drivers are very cautious when turning. But, if you are driving in a blind spot for a very long time, the driver may not know you are there. If you think you are in a blind spot, look for the truck’s mirrors. If you cannot see the person behind the wheel, it is likely that he cannot see you too.

Trucks also need a lot more time to slow down due to their size. If you pull in right in front of a truck on a highway and brake, the driver may not be able to bring his vehicle to a halt to avoid a rear end collision. When you change lanes on a highway, be sure to communicate with the truck driver sharing the road of your intentions, and also check your blind spot before you merge.

It takes just a little common sense to avoid careless accidents. But, accidents do happen. If you or somebody you know has been in a truck accident and sustained grievous injuries, be sure to contact a reliable and solid truck accident attorney at Fetterman & Associates to discuss your case. Call us at 561-845-2510 today for a free consultation.

Additional Reading:

Truck Accidents: Who is Liable?

Accident with a Truck: How Much Can You Sue?

Florida Needs SMART Motorcycle Riders

The month of May is very appropriately designated as Motorcycle Safety Awareness month. Spring is in the air and many motorcycle enthusiasts are taking to the highways in large numbers, most of them for the first time this year.

SMART Motorcycle Riders“Safety first” is what anyone who climbs on a motorcycle must be thinking. In a study conducted from 2003 to 2012 on Florida crash statistics, motorcycles accounted for 36 percent of all single vehicle accidents. That is a motorcycle hitting a tree, a curb, a sign or some other obstacle.

Think about that, these statistics don’t even take into account the most dangerous type of accidents – those involving collisions with larger vehicles. The Ride Smart Florida organization, which is an outreach extension of the Florida Motorcycle Safety Coalition, has made some of the most important tips easy to remember by their acronym SMART. This stands for:

Say no to drinking and driving

Make yourself more visible to motorists

Always wear your helmet when you ride

Ride in control within your personal limits

Train regularly and get endorsed

These tips will keep you well-protected when you are out on the road enjoying the freedom and exhilaration that comes with this favorite pastime of many Floridians. However, this is just a start. It takes more than those five actions to truly protect yourself on the road.

Start with your gear

Nothing is more important than wearing your helmet at all times, but be sure to also wear protective clothing that can reduce road burn in case you do have an accident. When you are going out again for the first time of the year, re-familiarize yourself with your bike. Remember, steering at slow speeds is different than at faster speeds. And the brakes are best when used to slow you down when approaching an area that might produce difficulties like a traffic jam or sharp curve, not just for sudden stops.

Make sure you are visible

Be certain that all motorists around you are aware of your presence. For veteran riders there is almost a second sense that you feel by the actions of drivers in front of you as to whether they seem aware that you are behind them.

Many riders rev their engine to make others aware but that isn’t enough. Always drive defensively anticipating what those beside you, behind you, and in front of you might do if they forget a motorcycle rider is on the road with them.

Always pay attention

Distracted driving is another key thing to be on the lookout for when riding in either a car or on a motorcycle. Also, you must always follow the rules of the road. There is a big temptation to seek ways around traffic tie-ups that aren’t available to those in a car, but going the wrong way down a one way street or riding along a closed shoulder of the road isn’t the way to proceed.

If all your precautions fail and you are involved in an accident caused by a dangerous, careless or distracted driver you should contact an experienced motorcycle accident attorney immediately. The law team at Fetterman Associates has sought and won damages for responsible motorcycle riders who have been injured by inattentive, careless drivers. If you have had a fun ride on the open road turn into a bad accident, leaving you out of work and in serious medical distress, you need to contact the experts at Fetterman for a free consultation today.

Injuries Common in Motorcycle Accidents

motorcycle accident lawyersThe warmer weather of summer is just right around the corner. As the temperature outside heats up, more and more motorcycle owners will hit the road. Hitting the road on your bike is a thrill and a great way to clear your mind. This hobby does come with a great deal of danger. Each year, nearly 88.000 people are injured on motorcycles. Being involved in this type of accident can be very damaging to both your motorcycle and your body. Here are some of the most common injuries motorcycle riders have after an accident.

Head Injuries Are Very Common in Motorcyle Accidents

If your head hits the road during a collision, there is a good chance you will have a serious injury. There are a number of helmets on the market built to withstand a good bit of force, but in some cases they will not be enough to prevent injury. Having a brain injury can lead to a lot of problems for you in the future. When facing an uncertain future due to a brain injury, you will need to consult with a lawyer. By working with a legal professional, you will be able to figure out what type of compensation you are entitled to.

The Pain of Road Rash

Sliding across the pavement during a motorcycle accident can create road rash. When the concrete rubs your exposed skin can lead to a number of problems and long term pain. In some cases, this skin irritation can last for a long time. The amount of pain and suffering this injury can cause is one of the reasons why seeking out monetary compensation is needed. Your lawyer will be able to help you put a price tag on your injuries and guide you through the settlement process.

The Risk of Muscle Damage

Damaging the muscles in your legs and arms is also a common occurrence in a motorcycle accident. Having the right amount of protection on your arms and legs can help you to avoid these types of injuries. If your muscles are injured, you will probably have a long road to recovery. It is imperative that you meet with a lawyer after an accident to find out what your rights are. The lawyer will be able to review the details of your case and let you know whether or not they think you need to file a lawsuit.

Biker’s Arm

One of the biggest disadvantages a motorcycle has when involved in a collision with a car is a lack of protection. Biker’s arm is the term given to a common injury in motorcycle accidents. This injury usually occurs when a biker is thrown from their motorcycle and uses their arm to break their fall. Landing on the arm with such force will usually lead to permanent nerve damage.

Fetterman & Associates Can Help You After a Motorcycle Accident

After the dust has settled from your motorcycle accident, give Fetterman & Associates at 561-845-2510. Our team of lawyers can help you figure out if you need to pursue the claim in question.

Improve Visibility with New Motorcycle Safety Equipment and Gear

Visibility is one of the biggest worries when considering the hazards associated with riding a motorcycle. This is one of the leading causes of motorcycle accidents in Florida.

This, along with the fact that 32% of motorcyclists in Florida believing they should not have to wear a helmet while on the road, leads to accidents being severe if not devastating when they occur.

Due to the large number of devastating motorcycle accidents that occur in Florida, and all across the nation, many organizations have worked to develop new safety gear and equipment to help reduce accidents, as well as the severity of injuries when they occur.

Motorcycle Safety GearThe Introduction of a Smarter Helmet

One organization that has taken huge steps in making motorcyclists safer is the Consumer technology Association. In fact, this “smarter helmet” was introduced at the 2017 convention. For the first time ever, there is a smart helmet accessory that offers the first wearable brake light. It operates via a connection to a smartphone application.

This innovative helmet was created by a French startup company and called the Cosmo Connected. This company is run by experts in the development of interconnected objects for the purpose of motorcycle safety.

How the Smart Helmet Feature Works

The device features a straightforward, yet clever design, which works with virtually all types of helmets. It connects with a special adhesive and clip-on support so that you can easily attach it to your helmet and remove it when it is unneeded. It is also idea for extra helmets.

A red light is emitted by the Cosmo Connected at eye level of the driver behind the motorcyclist. This provides better visibility when braking. When the motorcyclist is not decelerating, the device continues flashing so the rider is easily seen by all the other vehicles on the road.

The unique technology contained in the braking light allows it to switch on even when the rider is slowing down, but not using the brakes. Most people know how dangerous it is to downshift on a motorcycle when there are no vehicles behind them because they are slowing down by engine braking, resulting in no light coming on.

Design and Durability of the Cosmo Connected

Crafted out of durable plastic, this removable light is able to withstand any weather conditions. The gadget is also extremely lightweight and designed to detach easily from the helmet if an accident occurs.

Another feature of this device is that if an accident does occur, it automatically contacts rescue personnel in just three minutes, providing the GPS coordinates of the rider’s location and the health profile of the wearer.

The device hooks to smartphones via Bluetooth connectivity and provides low-power notifications when it is time to recharge the battery. The Cosmo Connected is thought to be an option to increase the safety of motorcyclists and reduce accidents.

Also Read: 3 Important Things To Remember In A Motorcycle Accident

Consult with an Experienced Motorcycle Accident Attorney in Port St. Lucie Today

If you are involved in a motorcycle accident, you need to contact an expert Port St. Lucie motorcycle accident lawyer for help. They can help you recover compensation from the responsible party. Contact Fetterman & Associates to learn more about the rights you have as an accident victim.


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