Though not legal in all states, lane splitting is allowed in some states to help speed up traffic and give cyclists a better chance of getting to where they want to go on time. Unfortunately, unsafe drivers and improper splitting can cause accidents that may require a motorcycle accident attorney to assess.
Lane Splitting Can Cause Many Motorcycle Accidents
In states where lane splitting is legal for motorcycle drivers, accident rates may increase and become very problematic. That's because drivers may not expect cyclists to split the lanes or know that this action is even legal. As a result, they may behave unexpectedly and cause accidents, such as trying to change a lane when a cyclist is splitting, which can seriously injure that motorcycle driver.
In this situation, assessing who is to blame can be a major challenge. Some courts may hold the cyclist liable, even when splitting is legal, because they may believe that it is unsafe. As a result, it is important to talk to a motorcycle accident attorney in this situation. They can assess what has happened and provide cyclists with the best chance of winning their case properly.
How an Attorney Can Help
A motorcycle accident attorney typically starts a lane splitting case by examining the situation in which the accident occurred. In most states, splitting is only legal if traffic is stopped at a red light or during a traffic jam. If the cyclist was splitting the lane at this point, then they were well within their rights and the other driver should not have been changing lanes or should have been more careful.
However, if the attorney discovers that the cyclist was splitting lanes improperly, then the defense can be tougher. Often, a type of split negligence defense is the best course of action. This defense admits that the cyclist was splitting the lane in a way that they shouldn't have done. However, it states that the actions of the driver changing lanes were more negligent or at least equally negligent.
For example, the car driver may have been cutting off another driver when changing lanes, which caused confusion that contributed to the accident. Or the cyclist may have warned the driver of their position by honking the horn, which the driver ignored. Whatever the defense, an attorney is essential to prepare the case and ensure that it goes smoothly and to increase the cyclist's chance of winning.
For more information, reach out to a company like Cok Kinzler PLLP.Share